So Gary Vaynerchuk, head honcho, founding father and spokesman of the Wine Library enterprise (Wine Library TV and the Wine Library Store) has started a new venture with brother AJ Vaynerchuk and Digg architect Joe Stump. That new venture is a T-Shirt search engine. Yep, that’s right, a T-Shirt search engine, something totally unrelated to Vay-ner-chuks expertise in wine and inspirational speaking.Â
Is Please Dress Me as good as Wine Library TV? Is Please Dress Me functional and useable, meaning, does it yield good search results? First of all, no, Please Dress Me is not as good as Vaynerchucks’ Wine Library venture. Yet. The reason why it’s not yet as good as Wine Library TV is because of something that it lacks. Don’t get me wrong, the Please Dress Me site looks gorgeous, but unlike Gary’s other venture, it lacks character. See, with Wine Library TV, you knew it was credible because of Vaynerchuks tenacity and love for the topic. If you’ve seen his Wine Library TV podcasts then you know how passionate he is about wine. In other words, Wine Library TV brings the thunder, whereas Please Dress Me does not. Do these guys really love T-Shirts or is this just a side hobby of sorts just because they have the cash to play with? Indie tee designers are a passionate bunch. Gary, AJ and Joe, are you guys passionate about tees?
The concept of a T-Shirt search engine is great. Imagine a tee specific search engine that you can use to search for all the Darth Vader tees that are available online and which will yield you a substantial number of search results (because we know there are a ton of Vader search in InternetLAND). Conceptually, this is a great idea. However, it seems like Please Dress Me (as expected) is going through growing pains because a search for Darth Vader shirts yielded me just a single tee, and it was a familiar Threadless tee to boot instead of something new. Conversely, a Darth Vader search yielded me more than 10 pages of results. Yes, thats a lot to shuffle through, but quickly switching to image views I can pick out the ones I like easily, and google even yielded the same green Threadless Darth Vader shirt that the Please Dress Me search yielded. For the site to be useable you need to yield more results, especially when searching for Darth Vader!
One feature that I do like is the ability to search by price point, this is a nice feature as you can search for tees specific to your budget. Those that like to use only particular colors, say eggplant green, can also search by color.Â
One problem that I recognize is the inability for users to add tees to the site. No doubt that they have big time companies indexed, like Threadless, but what about the little guy. What about Indie tee designers? At the moment, users cannot add tees to the site themselves, they have to go through the tedious loop hole of emailing their tee info to the Please Dress Me staff. Adding an “Add Tee” feature would make your site that much more robust and more appealing to the little guy.Â
Having said that, I think Please Dress Me has a lot of potential. The growing pains are present, but, with Vaynerchuks’Â experience, and hopefully passion for tees, we’ll see a lot of growth and development.