I confess, I rented The Great Gatsby instead of reading it as was the assignment from one of my high school English teachers. I managed to pull an A on the test, but didn't really care about that because I was more enthused by the fact that in the credits I had learned that Ralph Lauren was the wardrobe designer of this epic film. Not only was it the wardrobe, but the lifestyle portrayed while wearing it that had me hooked. And now 20 some odd years later I'm still shopping at Ralph Lauren. In fact, from a study I did on my spending habits I found that in 2008 I spent 65% of my expendable earnings at their online store. It is with this in mind that you have to ask why I would bother spending so much money in one place and not diversifying my online shopping. Well I always say, If the shoe fits, buy it! When it comes to the Ralph Lauren Online shopping experience its not just the fact that its user friendly, super organized, and informative to the last detail, its the fact that in most of its retail stores it doesn't come close to carrying its full line of products unless you have access to the Polo Mansion at 867 Madison Ave (between 70th St & 71st St) on at least a bi-monthly basis. The online store is completely stocked with interesting products by the designer from all of his collections including Purple Label, Black Label, Polo Ralph Lauren, RLX, Big & Tall, Golf, Tennis, and my all time favorite Create Your Own. There's more though...there's For the Pup, Home, and the list just goes on and on. In the home accessories online shop you really have access to great gift items. On top of that, you can have a whole line of home accessories engraved with a monogram. Everything is made personal at Ralph Lauren. Take a look to the left at this Devereaux Shagreen Frame designed in sterling silver-plate and genuine cream shagreen -- a textured leather revered by 18th Century French royalty; and it's matching jewelry or cufflink box below. They'd spruce up any side table or dressing area in a heartbeat and are gift wrapped for free with personalized gift cards and perfectly folded tissue paper enclosing your selected product. All boxes are custom made to fit each item online and are made of serious quality materials, great for reuse in silver or china drawers for storage of place card holders, linens, and other miscellaneous dinner table items. If you are like me, one online shopping purchase leads to another, hence I can really only place one order on a monthly basis at Ralph Lauren online because the shopping bag is usually full by the end of my visit, has many different shipping addresses, and editing items from the cart is just really not my bag. One spectacular line offered on the site at very reasonable prices is For The Pup. This is a great area for small dog owners as it offers seasonal lines that range from cashmere turtle neck sweaters to your standard Ralph Lauren Polo, usually available in about 7-10 colors. Our dog especially likes the classic polos, the rugby hoodies, and his turtle neck sweater. Collars are also readily found on the site and are handmade and are only made in small batches guaranteeing exclusivity at your dog park or in the neighborhood. The last product I'd like to mention is quite exceptional, Create Your Own. I came across this about two years ago and now most of the shirts in my casual wardrobe are from this line. Its brilliant because it replaces the pony with your very own monogram in your choice of stitching and moves the pony to the right hand corner of the shirt, being less brash as a branded person, after all Ralph Lauren is about quality, not how flash it makes you look.
These Create Your Own polos make great gifts and wear extremely well.
My recommendation is to order custom fit vs. classic and order a size larger than you normally wear for the best fit. Ralph Laurenoffers the best online services I've ever experienced. Monogrammed shirts are made within 48 hours and are shipped via fedex ground and arrive in 2-3 days after leaving the warehouse. As mentioned above, free gift wrap is available on almost all items.