Stupa: I've written previously about mystifying shoe names and descriptive copy. Now behold the Arche Stupa in ambre nubuck (photo on the left) and consider a name that is both mystifying and, well, stupid. A stupa (Sanskrit for "heap") is a mound containing the relics of a Buddha or a saint. In other words, it's a tomb. With sacred overtones. So we've got a death association and a sacrilegious connotation and--at least to speakers of English, Spanish, and Italian--a "stupid" soundalike. Three strikes. Arche shoes in general are beautifully crafted (in France) and very comfortable, and the Stupa is nice enough to look at, but, given the bad name, I can't say I'm surprised that it's currently on sale for almost half its original price. By the way, what is up with Arche calling the material of its soles "milk-fed Havea rubber"? First of all, the Latin name of the rubber tree is Hevea brasiliensis, not "Havea." And no matter how much milk you "feed" it, nothing magical will happen. It's the sap that's milky, not the fertilizer.
YOOX: They sell some top-drawer discounted designer duds at YOOX: Donna Karan, Martin Margiela, Dries Van Noten, Alexander McQueen, Prada. And they probably have a few yuks around the water cooler. But that doesn't save "YOOX" from being one of the silliest, ugliest names in fashion history. At least it wasn't randomly selected, according to the (God help us) DNA page:
The name itself reveals the personality of YOOX.COM: Y and X, the male and female chromosomes, flank the ‘zero’ from the binary code, the fundamental language of the digital age.
So logical! And yet so dumb!
YOOX is headquartered in Bologna, and the names of its "team" members (no CEO or president in evidence) are largely Italian, so I'm wondering whether "YOOX" sounds hip or American or something to people named Paolo and Giancarlo and Valentina. A certain distance from English fluency, and indeed from reality itself, might account for prose like this:
Once inside YOOX.COM you experience the alchemy of a creative cyberspace, where technology meets women and men to explore a new concept of entertainment via shopping.
Theality was conceived in 2005 to meet the needs of fashionable pregnant women and it is unlike any other maternity clothes on the market. With unique designs, high quality stretch fabrics, and detail-oriented embellishments, theality has leaped to the forefront of maternity fashion.
The word "theality" is the fusion of the words "theory" and "reality", which is the philosophy behind the line. Theality clothing is the fusion of what designers are showing on the runway and making it the reality for the pregnant woman.
Theality clothing is a must for any pregnant woman who is concerned with comfort as well as maintaining her sense of style. With the strong belief that moo-moos [sic!] and unflattering prints should be universally banned from maternity fashion, theality has designed a line of clothing that begs the question, "What's your theality?"
Where to begin with this? Let's just leap to the forefront. For starters, some words--like "theory" and "reality"--just shouldn't be blended. The sense of neither word is retained, and the resulting blend is confusing. I saw it as "The Ality" (what's an Ality?); others may try to pronounce it as "theel-tee." Second, there's already a successful Theory fashion brand. Third, the Theality logo (which I've been unable to reproduce here) for no apparent reason highlights the "e," the "a," and the "i." My brain's been on infinite loop trying to crack that code.
Then there's the copy, which is painful when it isn't laughable; I suspect it was written by a non-native English speaker and never copyedited or proofread. A few of the lowlights:
"It is unlike any maternity clothes on the market." Clumsy and ungrammatical. And the use of "and" to connect the two clauses in that sentence is a dead giveaway of an amateur writer.
"A fusion of the words 'theory' and 'reality,' which is the philosophy behind the line." How can "a fusion of the words" be "a philosophy"?
"And making it the reality for the pregnant woman." Awkward.
FYI, the Hawaiian garment is a muu-muu, not a "moo-moo."
"...begs the question, 'What's your theality?'" Everyone gets "begs the question" wrong, but that's no excuse to use it here to mean "asks the question." And the question being asked is a pointless one.
Bonus bad-name link: Read about Acne Jeans at Beauty Marks.