When I went in to Hmart Austin the other day, an asian grocer that has many smaller stores in it, I was amazed at the amount of stores selling BTS merchandise. They're the biggest boyband in the world right now, so it makes sense that they would be on products, but they were on everything.
T-shirts with their album covers on them, posters of photoshoots, albums...these are things I expected. However, when I started seeing cartoon versions of them on socks and their faces on iced coffee bottles in the checkout lanes, it started to feel...cheap. It reminded me of the overexposure of Britney Spears and Nsync when their faces were slapped on absolutely everything in the late 90s.
After seeing all of these things in the stores, I was happy to say that while we are also a BTS online shop of sorts as well, our BTS merch comes from a place of true fandom.
On our soy candles, rather than just slapping a picture from a photoshoot you've
seen a million times onto things, we found more candid pictures of each member for the labels. For the names of each candle, we used their nicknames, rather than their stage names. Instead of trying to appeal to the masses, we felt this was the best way since only true fans would understand.
Each member of BTS has their own candle in either lavender or rosemary scents, and then we have a candle for them as a group that's both lavender and rosemary scents together.
As a BTS online shop, our goal is to create merchandise that feels more like fan art.
--John Norman, Founder of Classy Smashed