Frequently Asked Questions
Click on each sentence for answers to common questions, or scroll down to see all.
• Are you still shipping during COVID-19 pandemic? (Yes!)
• What are your shipping rates and delivery times?
• What countries do you ship to?
• Do you offer Express Checkout?
• I already placed my order, but I forgot something! Can I add to it?
• My order is a gift. Can you not include a printed receipt?
• Why does it cost so much to ship one small item?
• My order didn't go through, but my credit card was charged. Why?
• My order never arrived and/or wasn't delivered. Where is it?
• My package has a customs charge to be paid. Why?
• How do I return or exchange an item?
• An item I received is damaged or incorrect. Can you help me?
• When will _______ be back in stock?
• Will you carry my product?
• Can I collab with you?
• Can you make my custom pin, patch, t-shirt, or other item?
• Do you sell wholesale?
• What is the sizing on your apparel?
• Have you reopened during the COVID-19 pandemic? (Yes!)
• Where is your storefront located? What are your hours?
• What is the storefront's phone number?
• Do you carry an item I found online also in-store?
• Do you offer In-Store Pickup on online orders?
• Can Rewards Points be used in-store?
• How do I return or exchange an item I bought in-store?
• Are you currently hiring?
• How can I get in contact with you? I have a question.
• How do I attach patches? Why doesn't my patch have an iron-on backing?
• My pin fell off! How do I attach them better?
• Why should I buy from Strange Ways?
• Who is your consumer/audience?
• Are you looking for promoters?
COVID-19 UPDATE: We're up and running! Thank you for the support both online and in-store. Our small business will survive this because of customers like you who support and shop with us.
ONLINE SHOP: Our online store is fully operational again! Orders are being packed up on normal timeframes. However, we've noticed tracking information taking a bit longer to update (24-48hrs). In some cases the USPS delivery process is taking 1–3 days longer to arrive. International and Canadian orders are harder to gauge, but delays are happening when going through the Customs process. Thank you for your patience!
Most U.S. orders are still arriving in about a week. International and Canadian orders could be delayed an extra 1-4 weeks. If something is urgent, we suggest choosing Priority Mail and being realistic about when to order for arrival times.
STOREFRONT: Our New Haven, CT has reopened! We're back to being open every day, but with slightly reduced hours due to decreased foot traffic. For the safety of our staff and customers, we're also taking extra precautions during the COVID-19 pandemic. We require that customers do as well when entering the store—including wearing a face covering. Read up on our storefront reopening.
All orders are shipped from New Haven, CT via United States Postal Service // www.usps.com - 1 (800) 275-8777
CART TOTAL – S&H PRICE – DAYS OUT FOR DELIVERY
Standard Mail Shipping
$00.00–$39.99 — $2.99 USPS First Class Mail (3-5 Business Days)
Priority Mail Shipping
Standard Mail Shipping
$00.00–$49.99 — $11.99 USPS First Class Mail (9-21 Business Days)
$100.00 and over — $19.99 USPS First Class Mail (9-21 Business Days)
Priority Mail Shipping
Standard Mail Shipping
$00.00–$49.99 — $15.99 USPS First Class Mail (10-30 Business Days)
$100.00 and over — $27.99 USPS First Class Mail (10-30 Business Days)
Any order — $36.99 USPS Priority Mail Insured (6-10 Business Days)
Please don't email asking for a different shipping cost. All rates are set, final, and we already work to keep them the cheapest we can.
• Orders come with *FREE* tracking emailed upon shipment. Please allow 24 hrs for proper tracking to start moving.
• Priority mail orders are packed up at 10AM EST every day, and picked up Mon–Sat during delivery mail pick-up.
• Since you're sent a digital receipt, we do not include a printed one in your shipment. (Good for gifts, and yay for less waste!)
• Orders shipped outside the U.S. are subject to import taxes payable by the customer at time of delivery. (Nothing to do with us!)
• For a list of countries we ship to, please see our second question below.
Please note that the information above is a general guideline. Nothing is guaranteed, as many factors may not be in our control. We are a very small team (of real human beings!) so if you encounter any issues just talk to us. Thank you ahead of time for not treating us like we are a large, hugely-equipped corporation—sincerely!
We offer shipping to the United States, Canada, and International countries based on which offer electronic Delivery Confirmation via the United States Postal Service, as listed here. Updated 8/14/2020 those countries are: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Israel, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom (Great Britain and Northern Ireland), Vietnam
The areas listed above are the only ones we ship to—no exceptions, sorry! The cost of shipping cannot be adjusted either. We apologize if we currently do not ship to your country, but these are the only ones deemed reliable via United States courier. We also may remove countries that have a bad record for delivering our packages in the past. If your country is not listed, we suggest looking into a mail forwarding delivery service.
Please scroll up to read about International shipping costs, delivery times, and import taxes.
Do you offer Express Checkout?
Yup! We offer easy checkout with Shop Pay, Google Pay, Paypal, and Amazon Pay. No need to type in all your details when you're logged into any of your accounts associated with these apps—either on your phone or computer. We also offer Apple/Google Pay and tap-to-pay with credit cards at our storefront.
Use our Contact form—we have just one portal for all inquiries which we check often!
Sorry, Strange Ways does not have a phone number. We use email specifically to keep better track of correspondence and order inquiries. This helps us give top customer service! You can also DM us on Instagram if there is something urgent.
Storefront + Shipping Address
910 Whalley Ave
New Haven, CT 06515
Info + Hours
Frequently Asked Questions
You are here! We constantly updated our FAQ as needed, to address common concerns and inquiries. This helps customers get immediate answers to many issues.
*Update!* Our system has recently added features, so that we can now add (or remove) items to an order—if it hasn't been packed up yet. Please reach out to us ASAP, so your order doesn't get packed up and sent out as is. It's best just to respond to your Order Confirmation email, so we easily have your order information. When requesting a change please be succinct and clear, for swiftness to get your order out as you wish. We can add items, remove items, or change the size of an item (assuming these are In Stock).
Please note any added items that increase your order cost, will need additional payment completed before sent out. Any items that may be refunded will take 3-5 Business Days for the amount to return to your bank or credit account.
Lucky for you, we do not include a physical invoice or receipt when we package up orders. Since we send the person who placed the order a digital emailed receipt, why even waste the paper? Send your gifts without worry that someone knows what they paid! (Most of our items are also not priced out on the back.)
If you wish to include a Gift Note in your package, please follow up with us by replying to your Order Confirmation email. We will happily do so free of charge, but please keep the message short.
Before anything—refer to your USPS Tracking Number for current delivery status. There is a link in your Shipment Confirmation email. The Tracking History section on the USPS website shows step-by-step where your package has been, and is currently.
Please note the tracking map on your Order Status page is not always correct! Refer to the USPS Tracking History for exact info.
U.S or INTERNATIONAL ORDER DELIVERED, BUT CAN'T FIND IT
If the tracking on your order says your package was delivered, but it's not in your possession—don't worry just yet! Our system automatically sends out a delivery confirmation when your local post office scans it as Delivered. However, these tracking details are not always exact to the minute, and it may still be on its way to you.
Here are some tips:
• Look around incase the driver hid the package
• See if someone else accepted the delivery (neighbor, front desk)
• Double check the shipping address
• Look for a notice of attempted delivery
We also suggest waiting 1-2 days to see if your local post office just scanned it incorrectly along the way. It may just show up tomorrow! This oddly happens more often than one would expect...
U.S. ORDER APPEARS STUCK IN TRANSIT or LOST
All orders are shipped via United State Postal Service. If your order appears to not be moving, we recommend reaching out to the USPS customer service line at 1 (800) 275-8777. They will simply ask for the tracking number sent to your email upon shipment, and open a case to search for it. You can also submit a request online. Unfortunately, we cannot dedicate time to following up about delayed or misplaced orders once they are transferred over to the postal service—but of course, if your order never arrives please contact us! (It's easiest to respond to one of your Order or Shipment confirmation emails, so we can easily locate relevant information.)
INTERNATIONAL ORDER TAKING A WHILE
All orders are shipped via United States Postal Service, and then transferred to the receiving countries local postal service upon entry. International orders can take up to 6 weeks to be delivered if not sent Priority Mail. Please only reach out to us only after that time period—unless your order appears stuck in the United States before entering customs acceptance. Upon leaving the U.S. and/or entering your country, your order may be held in customs for up to 1–2 weeks—which is completely normal. One can also try entering your tracking number into your local postal service's online tracking system, to see if there are any updates specifically from them.
If you notice from the tracking that the package has reached your country but doesn't appear to be moving, we recommend reaching out to your country's local postal service. They will simply ask for the tracking number sent to your email upon shipment, and open a case to search for your package. Do not reach out to the U.S. postal service. All packages are transferred from the United States Postal Service to the importing country's postal service (your country) upon entry. Any inquiries once a package has passed customs clearance needs to be directed to the receiving country's postal service. Unfortunately, we cannot dedicate time to following up about delayed or misplaced orders once they are transferred over to your postal service—but of course, if your order never arrives please contact us! (It's easiest to respond to one of your Order or Shipment confirmation emails, so we can easily locate relevant information.)
Customs Duty/Import Tax: All International orders are subject to import taxes (VAT)—which are imposed by country to country tax regulations and are common with ordering overseas. These duties are payable by the customer at time of delivery. This tariff has nothing to do with Strange Ways and we do not receive any of this compensation, but we do mention it at cart before checkout to be helpful. Many times orders are on hold to be delivered, until the receiver pays this tax. You should receive a notice from your postal service if you must pay one—respond to their request fast! Otherwise, your order may get returned back to us. Strange Ways is not responsible for a customer not paying their import tax in a timely manner. If a package is not claimed, or a customer rejects it, items can be refunded when received—but not the original shipping charge.
While it is very difficult to gauge what you may be charged in taxes upon import, this Duties & Tax Calculator may be helpful.
ORDER RETURNED TO STRANGE WAYS
If an order is undeliverable and returned back to Strange Ways, we will attempt to contact the original buyer in a timely manner. However, please reach out to us if you believe your order was sent back to us. We cannot issue refunds on the original shipping charge, and the buyer is responsible for additional shipping costs if a reshipment is requested. Our system sends out email updates along the way to try to alleviate delivery issues. An international shipment being returned back to Strange Ways because of unpaid import taxes (custom fees) is not grounds for a full refund.
Please note there is a time limit for rectifying lost orders, which starts on the day the order was shipped out. For U.S. orders it's 30 days, for Canadian orders it's 45 days, and for International orders it's 60 days.
Refunds are not issued when proof of delivery is provided via tracking.
If you still have concerns, please contact us.
In short: Hopefully within a 4–6 weeks after it sells out. However, there are no guarantees as it may depend on the designer(s) we work with. If it's been longer than that, don't keep waiting! If an item is not even our website anymore, it's most likely never coming back. Many of the items we carry are in limited production runs—so if you see something you like, buy it pronto!
Long answer: We restock product every month, but there is no set pattern to certain items coming back. We carry a large assortment of different designers, artists, and brands that all release things on different timelines. It may look like a lot of items are out of stock (particularly patches or pins), but we do our best to remove any items that won't be restocked again. If you can still view the item, there's a good chance you'll be able to buy it again in the near future—but that time has no set date.
We now offer a simple way to receive a notice when an item becomes available again—just go to the product page, and sign up for an email alert. Our system will automatically notify you when there is more available. This is also an easy way for us to see what products are most in-demand. Ones with high amounts of requests will receive top priority—so go cast your vote by signing up for an alert!
Please keep in mind we are not a huge factory churning out things on demand. Part of what makes our shop special is that we carry limited runs of unique items from independent creatives. If it was all mass-produced, it wouldn't be Strange Ways.
If an item is sold out out online, it should be sold out at our storefront as well—but you can see if one is straggling! Take a visit.
Our processing system seems to initiate payment, whether an order gets finalized or not. (We think this is odd, too!) The only reason an order wouldn't go through, is if one entered the wrong billing information. This is a measure our system uses to deter fraud, which helps both us and our customers.
If a charge shows up on your credit card or bank account, it will disappear in a few business days. (The status will likely say "Pending"—not processed.) Contact us if this charge doesn't disappear—but if you didn't receive a confirmation email from us, then the payment (and order) wasn't received by Strange Ways.
Because we want your order to arrive safely to you! Every order we send out is shipped as a package. This includes patches and pins—even one of them! Why? It's more reliable delivery for customers, and we want your items to arrive securely. We used to put very small packages in an envelope, slap a stamp on it, and hope for the best. The orders didn't always get to their final destination...
Our shipping charges also reflect the rates from the United States Postal Service—which is actually the most inexpensive shipping carrier. Our costs for U.S. orders are never more than $7.99. International orders are more, but your package is traveling through the air, over water, and back to land usually thousands of miles away—that's not easy! So yes, if you live halfway across the world from us you may end up paying more on shipping than the item. Our suggestion: Order more to make it worth it! For everyone! For the world!
Please do not email us asking for a reduced shipping cost. All rates are set, and final.
If you really need to save some money—Create an Account with us (and start earning Rewards Points!) for a 10% off discount code.
Strange Ways is located in the city of New Haven, CT in the main retail district of Westville. We opened a physical shop to allow for more interaction with customers, and expand the shopping experience including events and in-store only sales. (This is our only storefront by the way! Many of you ask.)
The storefront acts as our shop Headquarters—so all items available in our online shop are in-store (assuming they don't say “Sold Out”). We also now offer In-Store Pickup if you wish to order online, and grab your order in-store the next day.
Sorry, the storefront (and the shop in general) does not have a phone number. We use email to keep better track of correspondence and customer inquiries. Also, 95% of phone calls we used to receive were from marketers and SPAM phone calls, and it was distracting us from helping actual customers.
We do check emails through our Contact form every weekday! If you have an issue or question related to the storefront, that form will reach the correct people for both online and the storefront. You can also DM us on Instagram if it's urgent.
Our New Haven, CT storefront also acts as our shop Headquarters, meaning all orders are shipped out of there. ALL items available online (that are not “Sold Out”) are also at the storefront! The inventory online reflects the inventory in-store. (If an item is “Sold Out” online it is also sold out in-store, unless our inventory became off for some reason. You can always stop by and see!) If you have trouble locating an item, just ask a Sales Associate—or you can consider ordering online and doing In-Store Pickup at checkout.
Yes! But for “Locals Only”—meaning, your address must be based in Connecticut. As you go through the checkout process online, there will be an option to choose “In-Store Pickup” instead of having your order shipped out. You pay online, and and pickup your items at our New Haven, CT storefront.
Perks of In-Store Pickup:
• No shipping charges
• No waiting for shipments to be delivered
• Easy product browsing online
• Avoid potential package theft
• Feel like a baller rolling up with your order ready
In-store pickup orders are packed and ready for you by 11AM the next day. You will receive an email notification when your order is ready. Please come in with your Name and Order number, and notify the Sales Associate that you're collecting your order. We will hold your items for 7 days, after which we will cancel your order and refund you.
They can! But be careful how you redeem Rewards Points...
Once you've Created an Account with us online, you can start earning Rewards Points at both our online shop and storefront—they will tally under one account. When online, just make sure you are logged into your account when you place an order. If purchasing something in-store, ask the Sales Associate to look up your account email or name first so they can add it to the order before processing.
However, once you earn enough points for a discount you have the option to redeem them for online orders (a discount code) —or— in-store purchases (at register discount). The way the Rewards Points system works is you must choose one or the other—basically cash out your points online, or cash them out in-store. If you redeem your points online, you cannot use that discount in-store. In general, any numeric/alphabetic discount code you receive for Strange Ways has to be applied online for it to be activated.
First off, if you wish to Exchange an item it is easiest to just place a new order if you can. If one were to send their item back to us in exchange for another, it will take longer to receive the new item and there is still a shipping cost to be paid by the customer for the new package. We suggest sending your original items back as a Return, and we will refund you.
If you wish to Return your item(s) do so within 30 days of receiving them to the address below. Please include your Order # on the outside, or on a note inside—otherwise we may not be able to locate your original order to process the refund. If we receive items back in the condition they were sent (clothing not worn, other items in original packaging), there should be no issue and we will refund you for the returned items within a few days. (After you receive a confirmation email of the refund, it will take a few business days for the money to arrive back into your account.) Buyer is responsible for return shipping cost, and original shipping charge cannot be refunded.
910 Whalley Ave
New Haven, CT 06515
Please note that after the 30 days neither a refund nor a replacement can be given. Sale items and custom pieces are not returnable.
First off, sorry to hear that. Secondly, of course! While we work hard to only carry quality items, sometimes manufacturing errors happen. We also do our best to package items safely and appropriately for delivery, but again sometimes issues can happen—especially during transit. If you happened to receive the wrong/incorrect item, we'll get you the correct one!
The easiest way to resolve any matters like this is:
- Reply to your Order Confirmation email, so we already have any related information needed
- Please describe the issue or damage you have encountered
- If you can attach photos to your inquiry, it's very helpful in locating the issue or damage
We'll work to help rectify your situation, and make it right the best we can! Please reach out to us ASAP if you have an issue like this, so it's easier to resolve.
If you wish to return or exchange your item(s) do so within 30 days of your original purchase. Come into the shop during open hours, and if the items are still in their original condition (clothing not worn, other items in original packaging) there should be no issue and we will refund you at the register.
Proof of receipt by either email, text, or us looking up your name in the system is needed to process a return in-store.
Please note that after the 30 days neither a refund nor a replacement can be given. Sale items and custom pieces are not returnable.
If you think you have something that fits the shop, contact us via our website with links to product imagery (online shop, linesheet, image links, Instagram) plus wholesale pricing and minimums. If we are interested, we will contact you when we're accepting new items. We buy new product usually once a month. Please don't email us more than once in a period of 6 months about your items. We receive a lot of inquiries, and we do look at every request!
We excel in showcasing unusual, fun, and relevant product from independent artists, designers, and small brands. Strange Ways is about featuring original designs; please don't contact us with work that may seem like rip-off product or fan art. Brands that focus on promoting their name brand likely won't fit in at Strange Ways—artwork and visuals are more important than name recognition. We do not carry one-of-a-kind fine art pieces, one-off pieces in general, and anything with a high price-point probably won't work for us. If we buy vintage, it's best if there is a bulk lot of deadstock of an item.
If you live in the New Haven area where our storefront is located, you should still email us about items you want to be considered. Coming in and dropping off items for consideration may not end up in the right hands—please, don't do it! We also do not do consignment / we are not a consignment shop, and we are not an art gallery. There is no place to “leave items out, and see if they sell”—if something is relevant to Strange Ways and we think our customer will respond to it, we buy it.
Please keep in mind we can't accept everything, and the concept of a curated shop like Strange Ways is to keep within our brand vision and product assortment our customers expect from us. If we don't get back to you, our apologies. It may just not be what we are looking for at the moment. Good luck with your work!
Please do not submit your work via DM on Instagram or other social media. We need to use email to keep track of your work for consideration.
The artists we work with to create exclusive product are sought out specifically. There is no application form or consignment agreement to create items from your artwork. We do not print product on demand, and their is no sign-up process. Please reach out to us only if you have tangible items you are selling wholesale.
If you are celebrity or icon looking to create merchandise—or a well-established artist, designer, or brand that wants to collaborate on exclusive product—you can reach out to us on our Contact form to start discussions. At Strange Ways we love to work with relevant creatives to collaborate on items that benefit both parties. We specialize in pins and patches, and can produce items running from production to packaging to selling.
We only produce work which will be sold at Strange Ways. We are first and foremost a retail shop—not a production facility.
We do *not* do custom orders/manufacturing. (This includes taking any design or item we sell, and adjusting it to something else.)
We do not sell wholesale. We're a shop that works with designers to sell their products at Strange Ways. Product that is exclusive to our shop is not for resale.
Roughly 90% of the patches we carry have iron-on backings. We call it out in the product description bullet points if they do. You can also tell if the back of the patch is shiny and/or seems to have a film on it. These backings make attaching items to all *non* heat-sensitive materials fairly easy—basically if you can iron the item without much worry, you can iron on a patch to it. The warmth of the iron will melt the backing and adhere to the material it's on. Cotton-based fabrics like denim or canvas are best, while synthetics like polyester would likely melt trying to adhere the patch. (We also don't recommend ironing onto leather or faux leather—because who would iron leather?) One can place a fabric layer between the iron and the patch to prevent burning, or try ironing the garment inside-out to the back of the patch. This latter technique works best for any patches have a fuzz or pile to them.
Iron-On Patch Instructions
1. Position patch on garment, embroidered side up
2. Place cotton cloth or towel over patch to protect design
3. Iron patch on high with firm pressure for approx. 30 sec.
4. Remove ironing cloth and allow to cool
5. Flip garment to inside/reverse side, repeat steps 3 + 4
6. Allow garment to cool completely before handling
Some patches we carry do not have iron-on backings—it depends on the designer and manufacturer. Some designs also do not have iron-on backings due to the material not reacting well to heat, like holographic films or big, chenille pile embroidery. If in the product description bullet points an item doesn't say it has an iron-on backing, it most likely will not have one. To adhere these patches one can buy fabric glue (like this one from us), use a sewing machine, attach safety pins to corners, get a simple needle and thread, and many other creative options. Have fun with it!
Even patches with iron-on backings, we recommend sewing (at least a few points) or stitching all patches for longevity. This is especially true for large back patches and thick chenille patches that are heavier. Depending on where you are attaching patches, iron-on backings can start to peel off with wear and tear. However, with a little spot stitching or fabric glue at the corners they can be reinforced. Patches should also withstand normal washing if applied securely. Take care of your patches, and they'll stay close to you!
Dangit! If we had a nickel every time someone came to us and said this—well, we'd make a quick response for everyone. So here it is.
First off: You gotta be careful where you place your pins! If they are put on in areas like the upper chest and shoulder area of a coat, and you're one to constantly carry a bag with shoulder straps, its very likely your strap may snag them and pop 'em off. Items like hats and bags that are constantly thrown on the ground or onto shelves, you may also discover pins disappear from.
Secondly: Attach pins securely. We believe that rubber pin backs (like the ones we sell here) are the best bang for your buck. They mostly work on tension, so the harder you push your pin into them, the more lodged in the pin post on the back will get. (Watch your fingers! The pin post can come through the back of the pinback.) Remember to check on how secure they feel every once in a while.
Lastly: There are also deluxe pin backs (sold here) and locking pin backs (we sell those too) that are more expensive, but may be what you're looking for—the latter tighten around the post on the pin with a tiny wrench! And if you're super certain you know exactly where you want a pin to stay forever, try a dab of super glue inbetween your pinback and the pin to secure it FOREVER.
Because we stock items from many different artists and brands, it's not possible to give one sizing guide for all. All tees, sweatshirts, etc. are considered basic unisex/men's fit and anything straying from that normality will be mentioned on each product page.
We are currently not hiring. We will post job listings here, and on our social media, if hiring.
A top-level answer would be because you think the product we offer is pretty awesome! The shop is curated to carry unique and different items you might not find at other stores. We try to focus less on “brands”—but products, imagery, art, and messages instead. By having a more product-focused inventory, we can pick the best pieces to create an exciting trunkload of wonderful treasures.
On a deeper level we take pride at Strange Ways in supporting the underdogs. We buy from and work with independent designers, artists, and small brands. We actively seek out creative entrepreneurs doing things differently, and making quality product while at it. The world is becoming increasingly smaller and it's much easier (and more satisfying) to support small business than big-box consumerism. Strange Ways wants to be a part of that.
We imagine our consumer is anyone who wants something different, something that stands out. This often means they're a “different-thinker” themselves. But to try and define these people would almost be defeating the point. You know one when you see 'em. Generally our products have a sense of irreverence, irony, and charm that almost feels like an inside-joke to those who get it. The Strange Ways customer is quite savvy and smart when it comes to art, design, and pop culture.
Every item we carry usually has at least one thing unusual or defining about it. Often our stock can be viewed as statement pieces—which makes sense because many of our customers want to make a statement. Most of the items we carry are smaller, less-expensive pieces that can be added to your outfit or home to help express a bit of one's personality.
We got promotion covered ourselves, but thanks for thinking of us! Please don't contact us about this as we won't write back.