On Pricing


Hello once again; some of you might have noticed a price change around here with the Atlas shirt, and for that I’d like to first apologize. It’s not something I want to do, so I’d like to explain in more detail why I’ve made this decision that will affect work shirt prices going forward.

When I started my brand, I wasn’t sure how much it would cost. Let’s just say it’s more than most people realize. Still, it was my dream so I bit the bullet and paid for the samples, patterning, grading, setup charges for tag plates and more. Then there were the actual Heracles shirts (fabric and sewing), shipping, and import duties. I wanted to price the shirt at a price that other Japanese brands might have. If they were pricing it there, that must be doable, right?

Well, yes and no. Big brands can afford to set shirt prices lower because they’re producing in much larger quantities. That gets sewing and fabric costs down. Thanks to the volume of economies of scale then, $160 for a complex pattern and Japanese-milled selvedge chambray works out. For a small brand, not so much, unless one also owns a sewing factory. I pressed ahead with the Atlas again, but that’s when reality set in. The Atlas sold well, especially the Sage, but when I looked in my account, there wasn’t much money in there anymore. In fact, after paying for two runs of tees I was getting dangerously low. Something had to change.

Until then I had no formula for how to set prices. Instead I went with my gut. And while there’s something to be said about a gut feeling, I was looking at potentially not being able to run my brand anymore. 

That leads us to today. While some big brands charge north of $200 for a work shirt made cheaply in China, my products are made in Japan through and through, down to the last component. For me to continue supporting this incredible cottage industry, the only one truly like it on Earth anymore, I have to be realistic about my pricing in some cases. I’d like to say raising prices some is making me rich but it’s not. It’s simply what I need to do to keep this going and to continue to make my dream products, one that I hope you’ll enjoy as well.

For those of who you who’ve been along for the ride and can’t accept the new prices, I understand and there’s no hard feelings. After all, I was once a regular guy and fan of many brands too.

For those of you who want to continue, thank you for your support, it means more to me than most people will know. Creating this brand has helped me learn even more about business and life. Most importantly, it’s helped me to make lasting connections around the world with great people, and that’s pretty hard to replace.

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