Starting today, expectant mothers can get a little extra help breaking out of the leggings-and-tunic rut. Personal styling startup Stitch Fix is adding maternity and petite styling to their services, the company's first expansion into new product categories outside of standard sizes 0-14.
Stitch Fix works by having customers fill out an extensive style profile, matching them with a remote stylist, and using the customer's preferences and stylist's judgment to compile a "Fix" of five items for a $20 styling fee. The fee is deducted from any item purchased, and buying all five items results in a 25% overall discount. Customers leave feedback on the items that stylists can then use to inform future Fixes.
"We have learned so much from the data and feedback we received from clients who worked with us through their pregnancies or who would benefit from petite sizing," says founder and CEO Katrina Lake. "When we considered what we could be doing to better serve our clients, we saw that adding both maternity and petites to our offering was a real opportunity."
Anyone who's been pregnant or has spent time with a pregnant woman knows that the pickings are slim in maternity wear—there are limited specialty brands, and it's often hard to justify spending much money on clothes you'll wear for only a few months, so cheap and easy tends to win out over stylish. Stitch Fix hopes to help women integrate maternity and more forgiving pieces into their normal style.
"For clients seeking maternity styling, the feedback we heard loud and clear through our data is that pregnant women still want to look and dress like themselves," says Lake. "Our stylists are sending our maternity clients a mix of maternity-specific styles from like maternity denim, as well as maternity-friendly pieces that they can wear during and after their pregnancy, like open-front cardigans and maxi dresses. We're buying from many of our existing brand partners like Tart, LA Made, and DL 1961. We have developed a specific maternity task force within our styling team that consists of stylists who are experts in styling our pregnant clients. They are well-versed in the specific needs of women during all three trimesters of pregnancy, as well what they're looking for as they transition into life with a new baby."
Clients with smaller statures will also have more personalized choices through the service.
"Over four years and millions of data points, we've been able to learn about specific ways we can serve our petite client better," says Lake. "Now our stylists have access to a wider variety of petite apparel from brands like Collective Concepts, Andrew Marc, and Just Black that is better tailored for a petite silhouette, which can include a shorter inseam, shorter torso length on tops, and shorter shoulder seam. Like our pregnant clients, petite clients will receive a mix of petite-specific and petite-friendly apparel in their Fixes, depending on what each client's unique needs are."
While the new offerings may attract new clients, the maternity and petite options are primarily meant to do more for Stitch Fix clients who like the service but could get more out of it with broader choices.
"We're committed to developing long-term relationships with our clients, and we already serve many women who are pregnant or would qualify for petite merchandise," says Lake. "We saw this as an opportunity to better serve our existing client base, and evolve with our clients through every stage in their lives."