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You won’t believe how much people are paying for a pair of bright pink espadrilles.
Lilly Pulitzer is known for her pastel pinks and eggshell blues. But her flowery designs are officially the hottest items on the black market. Her limited line for Target hit the shelves on Sunday and quickly sold out by brunch time. People lined up at stores around the country, eager to get their paws on some moderately-priced prints. Snagging a Lilly Pulitzer dress quickly became the fashion version of the Hunger Games.
Many were dismayed to find the Target website was down early Sunday morning. So they turned to the company’s Facebook page to share their rage.
With people unable to find Lilly Pulitzer items on Target, a black market of the designs is thriving on the internet, with those lucky enough to get their hands on some Palm Beach-inspired bounty reselling it for astronomical fees.
One seller in downtown Manhattan is reselling a slew of Lilly for Target items, including the Gold Wedge Espadrille for $225. For perspective, the original price was $36, making this a 525% mark-up. (You can also get a pair of wedges from Lilly Pulitzer’s regular line for $198.)But perhaps the person hit hardest by the sellout was a girl who runs a Tumblr called Keeping Up with the Prep Girl. She penned an open letter to the Lilly for Target people, expressing her extreme frustration.
The letter starts out, “Hello there. How has your day been? Great, I assume. You sold out your line in lightning speed. Congratulations.”
What follows is a 500-word screed reaming the discount retailer and its design partner for ruining “the perfect opportunity to reach a demographic of people who can’t normally buy” their products, and warning “If we don’t stop things like this from happening again, we are just going to get overrun with madness.”
Everyone else might be getting high on 4/20, but these Pulitzer fans are feeling oh-so-low.
Screengrab via Target
Marisa Kabas is a lifestyle reporter and activist. Her work has been published by Fusion, Fast Company, and Today. She’s also served as an editorial campaigns director for Purpose PBC, a social movement incubator.