• Underwear Shame
  • Kathleen Donovan
Underwear Shame

We've all been there.

Frayed lace panties, overstretched elastic, wires stabbing your skin...I think it's the hallmark of a busy life spent caring for others and days of multitasking.  It's a rare few that don't have something awful in their drawers because of limited time or not knowing what's out there or insecurity.  We can help with that.

But when I went to market this summer, I experienced a different kind of shame that really shaped the direction of Fifth House.  Entering into some of the more established european brands' booths, I would be greeted by a sophisticated sales person who would talk to me about where I was located and my customer.  After a short friendly discussion they would walk me over to a small section amongst gorgeous, colorful, hand crafted intimates and show me their collection for their "North American customers".  In one instance it was a small rack of beige looking bras- watered down versions in price and style of their other collections.  I became so frustrated by this experience that I actually argued with one gentleman that told me he had met many women before me who had tried, but American women will not buy things for themselves.  They will only buy handbags and shoes that others can see and they want beige, cheap and practical underneath.

I was beside myself.  I had been the beige girl.....before I knew how I could feel, what was available, where to go...I spent the night in my hotel room journaling about how angry I feel when I am stereotyped in such a way and how dare anyone know what we want and are capable of.  

I boarded the plane the next day knowing that a retail store that would only be successful if I carried the "North American" lines was not for me.  It would be harder to work with upstart designers and import and select from established brands.  It might fail.  But we believe in our clients, their taste, their ambitions, their inner beauty.  On that plane ride home I decided this...we will have essentials to eliminate that lurking underwear shame and we will ALSO have FABULOUS.  Just like you.


  • Kathleen Donovan

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