Found 5 comments on HN
js2 · 2019-05-23 · Original thread
Recommendation to read Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman:


That's literally happening at Patagonia and has been for more than twenty years.

It's worth reading Yvonne's book [1]. In it, he talks about Patagonia clothes becoming fashionable in the 80's which led to a spike in demand, then a trough when fashion shifted and layoffs which deeply hurt him and the company. The reaction was to focus severely on attracting customers that were using the products for utility and to discourage others from purchasing. Wonder why you can't buy everything Patagonia makes in black, like you can for anything North Face? This is why. Wondering why effectively everything they make with a hood has an oversized hood that fits a helmet instead of being geared to bay geeks that have to walk two blocks from their Uber in the rain? This is why.


Yvon's book Let My People Go Surfing [1] is absolutely one of my favorite business books, and it gives quite a bit of color and insight into how he thinks about their business and the culture that they've built there.

EDIT: Another anecdote - In 2010 I bought one of Patagonia's new wetsuits. At 600$ it was twice as expensive as the nicest suits on the market, I'm lucky enough to live near a Patagonia store though and they had a yearly wetsuit sale so I paid 450$. Still an outrageous price for a suit. Most wetsuits last me about three seasons, I still wear that first Patagonia suit though. It was starting to show it's age last year so I brought it to the store and they shipped it to their repair shop up north, and then back to my house. They replaced all of the inside seams, a zipper, and added a key loop (a feature the original didn't even have). They did all this FOR FREE.

I wouldn't describe them as anti-consumerism, because they sell stuff. I do think the brand encourages thoughtful consumerism though, and mostly by producing products and services that reset your bar for value against cost.


neilk · 2011-02-21 · Original thread
Came here to say this. Every entrepreneur should read this book as it's a great manifesto about what a business can be. How you work can (and should) be as revolutionary as what you produce.

Here's an Amazon link -- no kickback, I just want more people to read it.

nraynaud · 2010-07-14 · Original thread
a related book, the story of Patagonia and Black Diamond:

My experience: I tried to start my company in the sports field, but I failed. At that time I was surfing 2h/day and running a bit. Now I'm employed, I gained 10kg, and I'm not really motivated and looking for a better way of living.

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