Lonestar Memories: Colombina on Perfumesmellingthings. (...)Lonestar Memories makes me want to escape the mundane confines of my everyday world(...)

Lonestar Memories: Katie on Scentzilla. (...) Lonestar Memories smells of the examined life. Inside there is joy, and there is tiny heartbreak, e xisting only in reverie. The scent unravels into the consideration of past experiences, and pinings for future joys and heartbreaks(...)

Lonestar Memories: Marlen Harrison's review on PerfumeCritic.com (...) If you're a lover of leather or richer wood fragrances, this is gonna be a holy grail scent and in that case, better get two bottles.(...)

Lonestar Memories: Cait Shortell's review on Legerdenez. (...) Do you appreciate scent because you identify with the scent and its image? Does a scent have the ability to create a memory outside one’s own experience?(...)

Tuesday, January 03, 2006


I sometimes try to figure out how people looked at their lives a couple of hundred years ago, let’s say 1685. Were they also living under the impression that things got faster from year to year? That they are witnessing unseen changes in a time of transformation? Well, I guess 1685 is an unfortunate year, after 30 years of religious war in Continental Europe. But still, I wonder from time to time.

This question came up again on New Year, when celebrating the passage into the unknown, there where I was born in the sixties. Here, in a little medieval town, little meaning 380 inhabitants, 5 public places to drink beer in the 60ies, some 30 dogs, cats not counted, there, in a place with some historical relevance, was a little work-shop like factory, assembling underwear, called Triumph. When the local factory closed (in the 60ies?... there I am not sure), an employee, Ms. W., decided to open a Triumph shop in the village, serving the 300+ inhabitants. To make things even more dedicated: She decided to focus on one target group only: The women in town and the surrounding two or three villages. Thus, since I can think there is this little shop, selling Triumph underwear for women to 300+ locals, with a modest window facing the main street, presenting underwear and bathrobes. And believe it or not, the shop is still there, at the same place where it’s always been, thriving to some extend. Since its opening, I would guess some of the manufacturing and assembly of the originally label has gone to Portugal first and then to China or Pakistan. A good part,though, may still be produced in Europe.

What people liked about the shop was the fact that they could try everything and got advice from Mrs. B. Unfortunately, I would assume, based on the fact that Ms. W. is facing her 70ies birthday soon, the shop will find an end within this decade. What are the lessons we can learn from Ms. W.’s little shop in a little Swiss village in our time? The first one; there is always a niche in a niche where you may find a business; even if underwear is not produced anymore in Switzerland, people will still need it, and pay for it. Then: What matters is service in a time where goods can be bought everywhere from everywhere for almost nothing; and at the very end of the road, people may pay money almost entirely for services not for products anymore. Well, almost.

Finally: We live in a time of local deindustrialization; maybe with a few exceptions: In Zurich, there is a little place where a few are rather industrious, producing flyers and perfume samples with their new Canon printer, assembled in China, and used in Switzerland to manufacture goodies for the world. Welcome to the age of global markets.

By the way: Ms. W. is an official sales point for Triumph, as mentioned on Triumph's website......


Blogger Heather said...

Loved this post Andy because it is captures very much what I am about at this very moment.

I talk briefly on my blog today about customer service - and thinking about it alot over the holiday - I too remember little shops that sold odd things but were meaningful to the people around. the personality of the shop was probably more important than the product - I have entirely different expectations of web service than actual shop service - but both are important - its something I feel very strongly about.

6:44 AM  

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