Quest for the cup. Stanley’s limited-edition winter tumbler becomes big-ticket item

Ashley Nevels from East Windsor stood in line for hours for a chance to buy one.

Naomi Yané

Jan 5, 2024, 3:09 AM

Updated 198 days ago


It’s the Quest for the cup! But it’s not the Stanley Cup you’re thinking of. Target dropped its limited-edition winter pink Stanley cup tumbler in collaboration with Starbucks and they're flying off the shelves and causing chaos. What is the hype behind these coveted cups?
Ashley Nevels from East Windsor stood in line for hours for a chance to buy one.
"I just absolutely had to get one of these cups. I typically don’t stand in line for anything, but I had to have this cup,” she says.
The Stanley brand is over 100 years old and was once synonymous with construction workers and outdoorsy types. It got a little traction in 2019 when the tumblers kept selling out on a site called The Buy Guide. Long story short, they were rebranded, this time marketing them to women and they quickly became an accessory that showed status.
Dr. Yi Luo is an Associate Professor at Montclair State University and an expert in social media trends. She says, owning something hard to find can be about status.
"By owning this kind of modern, this vibrant colored tumbler, they can be viewed at the same level as other thousands of influential established women,” Luo says.
Their limited-edition status made them sought after by influencers and in turn by their followers.
In East Windsor, several shoppers, including Ashley Nevels, attempted to get their hands on one of these winter pink, limited edition, highly coveted cups. But after waiting in line for hours they were told the cups were being sold online and not in stores. They were also told that the cups were sold out online. After some detective work, shoppers found a cart full of the tumblers stashed away and they called Target’s corporate office.
"Team leads were saying that they had the directive to sell the cups but when we were on the phone with corporate, we were told something completely different they said the cups were to be sold in stores not online because it’s a limited edition and each Starbucks within the target stores had a very limited amount,” Nevels says.
Shoppers told News 12 that those cups that were allegedly hoarded by employees were put back on the shelves. The story ends with Nevels and several other shoppers getting their cups on Thursday, but for them, it was about the principle behind what they felt was dishonest of Target employees to have done.
The $40 cup is already being resold online for anywhere between $100 to $500.

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