Luxury... What does it mean?
If you visit Tesco's website and type the word 'luxury' in the search box you'll be presented with an array of produce ranging from Eton Mess ice cream to scented pantyliners. Whatever the merits of the pantyliners and ice cream they both seem to be in a different sphere of luxuriousness to items such as a diamond encrusted Van Cleef & Arpels necklace or a gold Cartier watch. Are marketeers perhaps overusing the word and diminishing its value?
Exclusivity doesn't ensure luxuriousness
Luxury has always inferred a standard of quality and authenticity twinned with a certain level of exclusivity. However exclusivity in itself is certainly not enough to ensure that much sought after luxurious quality. In an increasingly aspirational world people love to benefit from the comfort of airline lounges. Certainly up market lounges such as the ground breaking Virgin Clubhouse and BA's Concorde Lounge exude a luxury that most people would embrace. Unfortunately not all airline lounges are the same and some might well offer free coffee but lack any genuine degree of luxury, even though entry is restricted to a relatively small number of travellers.
The age of approachable luxury
Today countless brands wish to promote high quality products and provide a feeling of opulence and extravagance at a realistic and sometimes very low price. Long gone is luxury served at arms length such as those Bond Street establishments that protected themselves with the term 'by appointment only', which simply advised shoppers of the type of person they were prepared to do business with. Rarely, if ever, would their appointment diary actually be that full. Thankfully retailers these days welcome all custom and luxury is offered more liberally than at any time in the past.
It could be seen that all this will result in a dumbing down of luxury – especially if everyone drives a luxury car, wears luxury clothes and eats luxury ice cream, but the simple fact is that luxury is changing. Even the most exclusive Bond Street brands have spread to Oxford Street, Sloane Street and other cities and department stores nationwide, not to mention the fact they also trade in every household via the internet.
For us we go to great lengths to ensure our pyjamas offer something truly luxurious and that's why we source all our cottons only from the very best mills. For example PJ Pan's brushed cotton collection isn't just one fabric type, it ranges from heavyweight to fairly lightweight cottons which are each brushed to varying degrees. Our Winter 2014 collection is to include some new silk pyjamas which in themselves are statement of luxury. Every garment is finished with carefully chosen genuine shell buttons and soon we are to offer some exquisite new gift packaging. We feel confident our pyjamas will always add a touch of comfortable luxury at bedtime.
Everyone to their own
Luxury today is accessible and, to a significant degree, it is not determined by extravagance. Ultimately true luxury exists only in the eye of the beholder. For some it will be a Cartier watch, for others it might be having their feet tickled and for a few it might even be a pair of PJ Pan pyjamas. We somewhat doubt it's ever scented pantyliners, but you never know!