Co-founders Mariana Hernandez and Cristian Rios launched White Rabbit, an eco-friendly, socially conscious underwear company, in 2016. The vision for their brand grew out Mariana’s frustration of having difficulty finding reliable, affordable underwear that you can feel good about wearing–both in terms of comfort, and ethics.
White Rabbit does exactly that, with underwear made of fabrics from manufacturers with the highest sustainability standards, and in factories where they know workers are treated well, with full benefits and good working conditions.
Here’s their story.
When we were first building White Rabbit we spent a lot of time building the brand, designing the products, traveling to Mexico to work with a manufacturing partner, and really honing in on the core of our social mission.
When we launched, we had a makeshift warehouse in our tiny New York apartment–the living room was filled with our inventory. We shipped all of the orders and handled all the returns directly, but when we quickly received attention from the sustainable garment community, we knew that doing fulfillment this way wouldn’t scale over time.
At that point, we had a pretty good understanding of operations and the services White Rabbit needed, so we went searching for a dependable partner.
Before finding Airhouse, I did a lot of online research and talked to several other companies. Shipping and fulfillment is super important for us. Because we’re an ecommerce brand, it’s at the heart of our business. When the rubber hits the road, you can say anything you want on your website, you can have the best pictures and the best brand story, but if people give you their money and they don’t get their products, or it takes 10 days to get the shipping notification, then that’s a big deal. Operations and shipping is mission critical.
What ultimately made us go with Airhouse was the pricing structure and service guarantees. It was great for us because there is no minimum to keep the inventory, and the rates are very competitive. We also felt safe working with the company because we received inventory insurance and weren’t locked into a long contract, which made us feel like we were taking on little risk and trust in our decision. I knew I wasn’t going to be drowning in monthly fees, so that was key.
"A lot of our time used to go into re-ordering stock, but now we know that Airhouse is on top of everything. This all wouldn’t be possible if we hadn’t found a partner like you."
Looking back on the warehouse we had in our New York apartment, we wouldn’t ever take something like that back on. Realistically, as a two person team, we don’t have the bandwidth to answer emails for logistical issues.
Airhouse’s support has been amazing because I don’t have to keep an eye on it every day, which is how it should be when you’re outsourcing. I haven’t had to reach out with issues because everyone is always proactive with mentioning any delays or order problems. And if I need to, it’s great to know that there’s always a person I can call up and get a quick response. At one point, some items from our inventory did not arrive in a shipment to the warehouse. Airhouse promptly let us know and helped us get started fulfilling what we could until the remainder came.
With the technology, we sell single pieces in multipacks or bundles, which we used a plugin for when we were doing in-house, but wouldn’t work with most services. Airhouse helped set up a way for us to continue selling while keeping inventory accurate.
Overall, it’s a relief that we don’t have to deal with all the small details of managing fulfillment anymore. Our products go straight from our manufacturer to Airhouse, orders are packaged with our custom recycled mailers, we don’t need to tinker with shipping, and returns are automated.
I wish we had found Airhouse sooner. It would have freed up a lot of time to do more for the brand, and do things that only we as the founders could do.
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