When Natalie Massenet launched Net-A-Porter, she revolutionised online shopping – allowing the lady with a plethora of cash to purchase the very latest Gucci or Herve Leger dress, without having to step outside her door. She capitalised on a market that was niche and absolutely minted, making herself a multi-millionaire in the process. However, not content with conquering the world of luxury womenswear online, Massenet recognised the potential for a similar site to grow on prosper – one that was solely dedicated to men, and so; Mr Porter was born.
Launched in 2011, the recession hasn’t impinged on sales as Mr Porter actually began when the luxury goods market exhibited signs of recovery. As is Net-A-Porter, the site is geared towards the more affluent in our society, but unlike its female counterpart, Mr Porter features around 80 brands, as opposed to Net-A-Porter’s 350. Cleverly (some might even say insidiously or craftily), the site’s founder knows that us guys don’t want to be bombarded with mountains of labels – just like when we shop in store, we want to get in, get the clothes and get out as quickly as possible.
If most of us guys are being honest, we prefer to shop in men’s-only stores and will try and avoid negotiating our way through the women’s section, only to arrive at a disproportionately represented corner of the shop, entitled menswear. If you have bags of cash, then Mr Porter is a dream site for the guy who likes to retain his masculinity whilst purchasing the latest designer labels. Featuring a mix of editorial content and interviews with some of the most revered and well-respected figures in the male fashion industry, as well as a style icon series, Mr Porter is all about bringing “bringing fashion to the man”.
Unfortunately, in these recessionary times which demand frugality and prudence, not everyone can afford to indulge in Mr Porter’s sartorial offerings, but just like the ladies, us fellas can dream as well. I certainly don’t have the budget of a Wall Street investment banker and I haven’t acquired that Hamptons summer house to wear those Ralph Lauren loafers around yet, but if I ever hit the jackpot, then this wish list shall be welcomed with open arms into Chez Tuohy.