With the Brooklyn-based designer and artist’s popularity growing fast in the region, a collaboration between KAWS and Uniqlo’s T-shirt line seemed like a match made in heaven. At least on paper.
But Singaporeans who stayed up til the wee hours on Saturday hoping to score one of the limited-edition tees were in for a sad surprise when the Uniqlo website unceremoniously crashed minutes after going live at midnight.
Things were no better at the Japanese retailer’s brick-and-mortar outlet in Bugis+ the next morning, where crowds pushed their way inside and began grabbing entire racks of tees — hangers included — before the people behind them had a chance to get one for themselves.
On the plus side, we didn’t quite reach full riot mode as happened yesterday in China.
— Manya Koetse (@manyapan) June 3, 2019
But while fisticuffs may not have been the order of the day in Singapore, there’s been plenty of resentment to go around about how things were handled, and Uniqlo’s social media accounts have been flooded with comments from disgruntled fans.
One group, of course, is making out like bandits: resellers, the ticket scalpers of the clothing world. As of press time, online sites were selling the coveted T-shirts for up to five times the original retail price.
Given how this has played out, many are calling for Uniqlo to set a “one design per customer” limit to curtail the problem. Other kindly souls, meanwhile, were busy sharing their own tips and tricks for snagging one of the shirts with fellow KAWS fans.
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