Cathy Hamilton: Stylish types get fleeced with Snuggies

Dear Snuggie makers, I take it all back.

The jokes, the insults, the “I wouldn’t be caught deads.” I apologize for the jabs at your late-night TV commercials. I regret my derisive laughter at those people wearing your trademark blanket with sleeves on bleachers and airplanes.

I didn’t know. I had yet to experience the cocoon of heavenly coziness. Now that I’m the proud owner of a new Luxury Microplush Snuggie in midnight blue, I’m convinced. Count me as one of the converted.

It’s amazing — amazing, I tell you — how my comfort level, physical and emotional, has increased since purchasing one of your “As Seen on TV,” er, garments. Or, is it a home accessory? Please advise; I’m not quite sure.

A few issues of concern, though:

I’m confused as to why my Snuggie is so darned long. I know it’s a one-size-fits-all kind of deal, but did you factor 7-foot NBA Neanderthals into the mix? I’ve noticed you make Snuggies for kids and — ahem! — dogs. Would a small, medium and tall selection for humans wreak that much havoc with your profit margin?

At 5’7”, I’m a tad taller than the average American female. Yet it’s difficult for me to dash to the bathroom without tripping over my Snuggie and doing a head-plant on the coffee table (i.e., this week’s close call during the “American Idol” commercial break.) Plus, the sleeves droop a good 10 inches past my fingertips. It’s not that I mind looking like Dopey the Dwarf. (God knows, it still beats my old Lanz Tyrolean flannel nightgown.) Still, I’m curious.

Also, I wonder about the two enormous patch pockets that hit me at the knee. What are these for, exactly? My remote control collection? Box of Kleenex? They’re big enough for the entire Sunday paper, but a little low to be of any use.

I considered taking my Snuggie to the tailor for alterations, but I was afraid she’d laugh me out of her shop. I’d resize it myself, but I’m only so-so on the Bernina, and I fear losing that elegant Snuggie drape.

People reading this will probably say, “What’s the big deal? Who cares what you look like sitting on the couch in your rumpus room?”

But we know better, don’t we Snuggie makers?

As the ad on your Web site so accurately states, Snuggie is a “pop culture phenomenon” and “perfect for traveling in the car, chilly office buildings, sporting events, cold movie theaters, nighttime pub crawls and much, much more!” (Actual ad copy from official company Web site.)

I’ll admit, I initially scoffed at the idea of wearing my Snuggie to the office, until the sub-zero temperatures last week changed my mind.

But a pub crawl? Really, Snuggie people? True, the midnight blue complements my eyes beautifully, but I can’t fathom walking into my favorite watering hole and ordering a Sidecar, looking like Obi-Wan Kenobi.

If you’re going to promote Snuggie as a “going out” kind of garment, might I suggest a few design changes:

• Cinch the waist. This can be accomplished with a simple drawstring or a matching stretch belt with Velcro fastener.

• Add darts for a figure-flattering profile for women; tapered waist for men.

• Raise the hem to at least two inches off the floor. (A mini-skirted version would be great to wear with leggings.)

• Cut the sleeve length to the wrist. Offer a 3/4 length option for those of us who are always dipping our sleeves in the salsa.

• Relocate the pockets to where they can do some good. Hip placement is excellent for wallet and car key storage; a smaller slot on the chest to hold reading glasses.

• Embellish. I can’t emphasize this enough. One of the turn-offs of the Snuggie is that it’s just too plain! Who wants to party on a pub crawl without a little bling? Don’t stop with college logos and mascots. Think zippers! Think chains! Glitter and sequins! Bejewel and bedazzle!

No need to thank me for the suggestions, Snuggie makers. I know a little something about product design, and I’m happy to share. Don’t worry, you’ll sell a million of these, yet. And, if you ever need a testimonial — dare I say, spokesmodel — contact me at the number below. I’ll do my best to spread the Snuggie love.

Yours in Snugginess,

Cathy

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