Missoni for Target sells out in stores, crashes Web site

September 14, 2011

Target’s Web site is back after multiple crashes Tuesday and early Wednesday, but frugal fashionistas hoping to find zig-zag print dresses and sweaters from the Missoni for Target line may be out of luck.

The retail giant launched the new limited collection with the Italian luxury brand Tuesday morning in the midst of Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in New York.

Hungry buyers flooded the Web site, crashing it multiple times. Less than 48 hours after the launch, many of the items on the Web site were listed as out of stock.

In retail stores, the rush was similarly dramatic.

The Associated Press likened the onslaught to the notorious crowds that clog stores on Black Friday:

In a scene that was reminiscent of the shopping frenzy that typically comes on the day after Thanksgiving, Target’s website crashed several times throughout the day and more than a hundred shoppers lined up at many of its stores early in the morning on Tuesday for a sale of limited offerings of its Missoni for Target collection of bikes, luggage, clothes and housewares.

The partnership is the latest in what has become a regular practice for mass retailers and high-end labels. The two ends of the fashion market have been teaming up to offer cheaper versions of designer goods for the masses, who may admire lux pieces, but are not willing to pay steep prices.

Although this is not the first cooperation of its kind for Target — the company previously worked with Alexander McQueen, Zac Posen, Rodarte and Liberty of London - Local reporter Maggie Fazeli Fard found the mayhem the line created a bit extreme:

While the other collections had been successful, the popularity of Missoni’s collection was unprecedented both in stores and online.

Target’s Web site crashed several times Tuesday. The site was briefly back up early Wednesday, but crashed again at 6:30 a.m.; it was finally operational two hours later.

The hubbub was not unique to the online shop. In New York, the East Harlem store was stripped in 15 minutes, whereas the collection sold out at the Atlantic Avenue location in Brooklyn in about 10, reported Racked NY , a style and shopping Web site.

Along with a down economy, Target’s intense marketing campaign may be behind the frenzy of bargain-hunters. The Associated Press reports that Target Corp. worked hard to create a substantial buzz.

Target declined to comment on how much the company spent on marketing, but it targeted social media sites like Twitter and had ads on TV and in Vogue magazine.

Included in that marketing scheme was a giant puppet which appeared at New York Fashion Week to herald the launch of the discount brand.

“Barring that explanation, I’d like to blame this whole thing on Marina, a 25-foot Italian puppet doll Target used to launch the Missoni collection,” says Elizabeth Flock of BlogPost.

“She blogs, and tweetsand does all kinds of things dolls shouldn’t do. Just look at her.

More on Missoni for Target:

BlogPost: Missoni launch crashes Target Web site, spreads mayhem

Faster Forward: Target site down as Missoni collection launches

Missoni for Target collection, a day later in D.C.: Crickets

Target’s Missoni exclusive collection creates craze in stores and online

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