Recently I found myself doing something highly unusual for me: shopping at Restoration Hardware.
Short of joking with a friend of mine that her home looks like it came directly out of a Restoration Hardware catalog, I know very little about this place. They tend to be out of my price range, so I try to avoid the decorator’s envy and just stay away. I can’t even say I’ve really perused through their catalog for that matter, so I could be way off-base with my friend. It’s just a phrase I’ve picked up over the years.
But this was an emergency – I needed a pair of The Perfect Slippers, and I needed them NOW!
To be fair, I already own a pair of The Perfect Slippers. They are garnet colored, filled with down, and have a soft, furry lining. Yes, I said they are down-filled slippers. It’s like having a down comforter for your feet, and it is amaaaaazing.
Unfortunately, my slippers are now very old and I’ve worn holes in the bottom of them, causing me to leave a trail of fluff and feathers everywhere I go. I hoped to get a new pair for Christmas, and when I didn’t I went online to order myself some – only to find that they were sold out! Oh no!
Hence the real-time, in-person visit to Restoration Hardware. Everything is so rustic-chic and industrial-cush and leather-bound-furry and pretty there! I did a quick survey of every French Casement nook, Reclaimed Russian Oak cranny, and Woven Seagrass basket in the entire store and quickly realized that my slippers were nowhere to be found. Egad.
Before walking out the door in dejected slipperless misery, I made a last-ditch effort to find them by asking an employee if they might have some in back. He stuffed the armful of jumbo bubble wrap he’d been carrying into a nearby Salvaged Wood & Rope planter and told me somberly that they were out of my slippers – but with an extended finger and a uplift of spirits, he said he would look online! What size did I want, and what color? He was All Things Helpful and really wanted me to have those slippers – as he should, since they’re perfect and all.
After some typing and clicking and clacking, he gently broke the news to me that the slippers had been discontinued. He waited patiently while I raised my fists to the gods and shouted “Nnnnooooooooo!!!” and followed that up with a “oh, man. That is really, really bad news,” then offered to call around to other stores for me. He told me that if they were available elsewhere he’d have them send the slippers to me directly, which would be free. His upbeat optimism helped to somewhat ease my heartbreak.
While he conducted his search, I tested out the give and take of the nearest leather sofa (aka I sat down and bounced on it for several minutes). Finally, he came over and told me he’d located one pair. In fact, he’d located the last pair of The Perfect Slippers in all of the surrounding Restoration Hardware branches, and they were to be mine. Alllll miiiine! They were my size, my color, on sale with an extra 10% off for some reason I can’t remember, and they were M I N E.
After some logistics and exchanges of cheer, I was on my way. While I’m saddened by their choice to discontinue the best slippers of all time, I was thrilled with the service I received for such a little item, and I am eagerly awaiting the moment I walk up to my door and see that telltale package on my front stoop…
…in fact, I am very eagerly awaiting that moment – as I was told my slippers would arrive in 2-3 days. You see, it’s now been two weeks, sooooo….yeah. My feet are cold.
I guess my slippers are, well, lost. Something about UPS. Something about them looking for the package and something about how they’ll keep me posted. At the very least, the customer service remains impeccable, even when failing to deliver. My helpful Restoration Hardware helper gave me his email address and phone number and told me to contact him, day or night, if I wanted to check up on my slippers. How nice!
The thing is, though, I don’t want to have to check up on my slippers. I just want my slippers. And I want them NOW!
I’ll keep you posted.