LA Fashion: Who Pays That Much for a T-Shirt?

LA Fashion: Who Pays That Much for a T-Shirt?

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What is with high-priced t-shirts these days? Prices for most clothing designs are based on fashion design manufacturing practices as well as the design itself. For one designer in Los Angeles, t-shirts (and their prices) are about comfort and lifespan.

East to West, and Gowns to Tees

Yuchin Mao left her prestigious post as senior designer for fashion house Helmut Lang in New York to follow her own vision to Los Angeles. Mao used to make $7,000 gowns, but now uses the same skills to make $98 skirts and $148 dresses.

Not to mention $90 t-shirts. Mao designs what she describes as high quality t-shirts that range in price from $39-$90. Are these clothing designs truly worth nearly $100, or is the price a nifty trick of fashion marketing? You may have to try one on to decide for yourself.

Fashion Marketing or Value-Prices?

Fashion designers have always priced their clothing designs higher than standard department stores; it comes with the territory of fashion marketing. If a clothing design is distinct or unusual, it can often draw higher prices. If it is not mass-produced, the manufacturing costs are often higher.

But it's also about quality. Mao emphasizes comfort and durability as the goals of her clothing designs.

How to Care For Your Well-Marketed (and High-Quality) Clothing

On the blog Style Forum, some fashion fans claim that wearers aren't supposed to wash expensive t-shirts for 6 months. Others cold wash and then hang dry. Others even wrap them in a towel.

Whatever the protocol, these clothing designs are marketable. You'll find them everywhere, from Versace in New York to Three Dots on 3rd St. in Los Angeles. If it's one of Mao's designs that you end up with, you can know that it's made to last.

LA Times
Style Forum