As far as celebrity stylists go, Rachel Zoe has done an unparalleled job of disseminating her taste to the masses. Between her reality show on Bravo, that stint at Halston, her editorial site and daily newsletter The Zoe Report, her books and her eponymous clothing line, Zoe is both accessible at every level and nearly impossible to ignore.
But in case you hadn't gotten enough, The Zoe Report is now launching a subscription service as well, delivering to members' doors a selection of Zoe-approved goods four times a year. The first batch will start shipping late this month.
The so-called "Box of Style" will run shoppers either $100 per quarter or $350 for a full year, which isn't a bad deal if you're looking at the numbers alone. Each box is valued at over $300, with a $100-plus "hero" item that the team will reveal in advance. The rest of the goods — which span clothing, beauty, accessories, home and lifestyle — are a mystery until they arrive.
According to a rep for The Zoe Report, the brands included are a mix of up-and-comers and well-known brands (anything featured on the site is "fair game"). As far as getting the deals to keep prices low goes, he says that it comes down to the relationships that the company has with brands, noting that "it's a new way to put their product in front of our audience."
Box of Style follows in the wake of subscription startups like Birchbox, which opened its first store in New York last summer, and is one of the more prominent players in the fashion and beauty sphere. Birchbox is also rather practical in that it lets members test out beauty products en masse before buying what they like in full sizes later. Stitch Fix, another subscription service for clothing, enlists personal stylists to help shoppers develop their style by creating individualized boxes for them; what doesn't suit can get returned. On the men's side, Dollar Shave Club makes itself useful by sending blade refills to guys at set intervals. Bottom line: with these companies, it's not just about getting a treat in the mail — there's a utility to the service, too.
Zoe's version is much more reliant on shoppers' eagerness for that self-gifted Christmas morning feeling, which can be dampened slightly if a few of the items aren't exactly to taste. That's not to say it won't work, though. She's working with a boatload of name recognition from the start.