If you’re a die-hard Kanye West fan, you’d know that last Friday, thousands of die-hard fans lined up to wait on limited edition merchandise from his ‘The Life of Pablo Tour’ Pop-Up shop, with Melbourne being one of the 20 global stores set up with everything from caps to shirts to jackets, priced between $40 to $400.
In a very Kanye-like manner, store locations were only announced 24 hours prior to opening, with stock being customised to each city. With Melbourne’s location being in Brunswick Street, dedicated fans had lined up the day before, camping out to ensure that they’d be able to get something for themselves. With the success of West’s previous album and the release of his merchandise for his last tour, it was clear that the this pop-up store was going to be successful no matter what, with thousands of people lining up for hours and all the stock selling out within minutes.
Some shoppers were lucky, others weren’t – with those camping out the day before receiving first-class treatment, including a carded brochure with all available items listed. It was also reported that only three people at a time were allowed in the rented out store, with shoppers only being ‘limited to three items of each style’ to ensure that the pop-up store could stay open over the weekend and allow for other fans to make a purchase. There was also another rule that instated that shoppers were not to touch the merchandise. It seems that while most stores go with the ‘you break it, you buy it’ concept, West’s concept is more ‘you touch it, you buy it.’
However while the pop-up store was a success within itself, the owner of another Melbourne store, Charlotte Knightley, has asked for reimbursement from Kanye West himself for the damage caused due to the shopping mania, a news outlet reported. Posting a message on Facebook yesterday, Knightley stated that her store, Zetta Florence, had lost ‘around $6,000’ due to profit losses from the chaos that West’s fans have caused. From yelling at other customers and intimidating them from entering neighbouring stores, it seems that other stores in the surrounding area weren’t happy with the chaotic scene and snaking line of customers waiting to get a pick at their merchandise.
Either way, it’s a wrap for the pop-up store, with all the merchandise reportedly selling out – some fans are now preparing for the tour, while others have stated that they’ll resell their purchases for triple the price online.
Kanye West remains king in profiting from merchandise and is now in preparation for his tour, ‘The Life of Pablo’.