As a long-time lover of the MOMA design store for their beautiful, useful gadgets, I was surprisingly hesitant to give Fab.com a chance. Both retailers are known for their amazingly (and sometimes famously) designed products, but that is where the similarities end.
Boasting Ashton Kutcher as one of their early investors and a slogan of “Smile, you’re designed to”, Fab.com is like a lot of other flash sale sites; they feature a select group of products at discounted prices for short periods of time. What sets it apart from a site like Gilt.com, however, is its variety of products. While Gilt focuses on luxury and designer goods (that, honestly, I can’t afford, even when they are discounted), Fab focuses on the quirky, the modern, the simple and the useful.
With an easy-to navigate website and a recently updated UI, Fab is fun to click through, but you’ll be disappointed if you come to the website with the goal of finding something specific. Since the inventory for the site is limited-run by design, the feeling of kismet you get when discovering something you weren’t even aware you needed in the first place is the real draw.
The underlying beauty of Fab.com, however, is its stunningly simple branding. Most of the copy on the site is spare, and all of the text is simple black on a white background. The few mailings they’ve sent to my house have been elegant and sparse- what can I say, I’m a sucker for pretty typography (this probably explains why I’m such a Crate & Barrel addict…I’ve got a thing for black and white Helvetica.)
They’ve recently made a big push to speed up the shipping process (a major complaint of long-time customers, and inhibitor to growth for the company) and now make a point to mention that over 95% of their items ship to the customer within 1-3 business days. Sign up to get access to Fab here, or check them out on Facebook or Twitter.