Fancy that, Pinterest rival brings yet another subscription box to market

Fancy subscription

Subscription commerce has taken a few hits over the past few months for being over-hyped and over-invested, but that isn’t stopping social shopping site Fancy from launching a new box-of-the-month of its own.

Starting today, Fancy users can sign up to purchase a $30 monthly box curated by the site’s two million members. When they order the box, members can indicate their favorite categories and Fancy populates the box with some of the most popular items in those categories.

A picture of a sample box shows what appears to be lower-priced, knick-knack type items (such as a watch band, T-shirt and a pack of gum), but the New York startup says each box exceeds $60 in retail value.

With all the possible kinds of subscription boxes out there – from cosmetics to eco-friendly products to food for all kinds of diets, you’d think consumers wouldn’t be looking for another box of the month. But Fancy COO Michael Silverman said in an e-mail, “this was a feature our users were asking for and we decided to act on it as the holiday season approaches.”

To Fancy’s credit, the company has been especially active creating new ways for consumers to actually purchase the products they curate in a Pinterest-style way on the site. Last week, it launched a new group gifting option and earlier this summer it rolled out a program to compensate users for their actions.

A monthly Fancy box is an interesting idea, but I’m curious to see if the company can fill it with items that people actually want. Several of the most visible popular items on Fancy cost in the hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars. And, personally, I’m not sure I’d be into some of the cheaper items (like graphite skulls and a vampire fangs ice tray). But the company is clearly busy cooking up ways to turn curation into commerce and the new box is yet more evidence of that.

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