If you were looking to nab a new pair of L.L. Bean Duck Boots for yourself or someone else this holiday, well, you've waited too long. You'll have to battle this winter's sloshy, slippery days some other way.
The boots are on backorder with a waitlist of nearly 100,000, according to Yahoo, and even for orders placed now, the boots won't show up until the spring.
And who else would be to blame for this madness but millennials?
That's right, the generation that's the butt of every joke is also responsible for making it nearly impossible to score a pair of L.L. Bean's infamous Duck Boots. Sure, you could shake your fist at L.L. Bean for being unprepared and beg them to make more. But it's just not that simple: The company expects to sell 450,000 boots this year, and they are still hand-crafted and made in the U.S.
"Making more boots is also a slow process, given the specialization needed to produce the hand-crafted boots," the company's spokeswoman tells Yahoo. "Perfecting the stitching process takes 26 weeks, or half a year, of training. We've bumped up production. We have three shifts going. We're hiring new people. We're doing all we can to lessen the wait time."
Better luck next year?
The brand is active on all of its social profiles, but like many outdoorsy brands, the one to follow is its Instagram. But it's also of note that L.L. Bean's posts aren't just for outdoor lovers but dog lovers and plaid lovers, too.
The ad above is part of the brand's current holiday campaign. It's a cute spot, with borderline twee music, showing people exchanging gifts—the items are wrapped so we know exactly what they are, though for some reason the people receiving the gifts don't seem to—and leans into the brand's work to satisfy its customers.
- Leon Leonwood Bean got the idea for mixing rubber workman's and leather uppers after returning from a hunting trip with cold feet in 1911. The Maine Hunting Shoe was born. He enlisted a cobbler to make the shoes and began working out of his brother's apparel shop.
- In 2012 the company celebrated its 100th anniversary.
- The company is based in Freeport, Maine, and uses more than 50 catalogs to reach over 10 million customers.