Forging an Empire

There's no doubt about it: Porn superstar Tera Patrick is on a roll. She hosted the 2008 AVN Awards, which marked its 25th anniversary January in Las Vegas. Her production company, Teravision, has been pumping out such critically acclaimed hits as Fashion Underground, Reign of Tera 2, Teradise Island 1 and 2, and Dave Navarro's Broken. Her DVD InTERActive won the Best Interactive award at the 2007 Venus Berlin expo, where she was named Businesswoman of the Year. Patrick has broken into mainstream media on E! Channel's "Rock Star Wives," hosted Spike TV's Guy's Choice awards, and made a cameo appearance in the feature film Blades of Glory.


With all this success, it only makes sense for Patrick to leverage her fame in retail. And she is doing just that by launching Mistress Couture and its branded website, On this site, "you can purchase the entire Mistress Couture line, including bras, panties, garter tops and garter skirts, [and] skirt sets, as well as the signature line, which includes T-shirts and tank tops," she says. The collections also are turning up quickly online at retailers such as,, and


Tera is the designer behind the Mistress Couture line; an impressive feat considering how busy her schedule is. As she says, there is a lot of variation in the collections. For instance, the Mistress Couture Vixen and Vamp Plaid bra and panty set are akin to sexy bikinis, while the Double Trouble set is comprised of a netted pink cheetah halter bra with black satin bows and a netted pink cheetah panty. For an edgier look, the Charmed set comes with a pink or black lace-up vinyl top with sweet sleeves and ruffle trim and is paired with a matching vinyl mini circle skirt with heart-shaped pockets and ruffle trim.


"I believe all women are beautiful," Tera says. "I designed this line with the vision that would make every woman, married or single, young or old, and of every body type, feel as sexy as possible ... Whether you're a housewife, school teacher, or a porn star, every woman can be their man's mistress."


"Through my mainstream crossover, I have begun to become a household name," Patrick notes. "Hopefully, when the consumer has a choice between [her gateway site] or some other brand, my celebrity will leverage sales."


It's worth noting that Patrick is marketing Mistress Couture to both male and female porn surfers. "I am using a combined strategy," she says. "More and more women are watching porn today. Every day, my fan base increases, including the female fans. All of my products are marketed towards both sexes. Men can purchase the movies for themselves or for their wife [or] girlfriend."


Not surprisingly, Patrick is using and her other adult sites to send people to Mistress Couture. "We send traffic from our free trailer site,, to our online stores and VOD sites," she explains. "Although my mothership for all things Tera is, fans can find more mainstream-friendly information at"


At retail outlets that carry Mistress Couture, Patrick believes that her star power will persuade consumers to buy her premium products and this sales success will serve as a wake-up call to other adult retailers. "The biggest disconnection we experience is with some distributors who don't support premium products," she says. "They don't want to spend the money it takes to be a high end retailer, but they ultimately will be writing their own death certificates because the consumer is not stupid. If fans want my new movie Tera Goes Gonzo and new releases are unavailable from certain retailers, they are doing both themselves and their customers a disservice; the consumer will go elsewhere. As we see the shift from DVD sales to online downloads and membership sites ( is growing at 30 percent), lingerie and novelties could very well be the saving grace of the new boutique brick-and-mortar store. In this shrinking global village, there are no captive consumers."


Is Tera Patrick overestimating her selling power? She doesn't think so. "My sales are up, and I must say that Internet sales and online stores, as well as VOD and mobile [sales], are all flourishing," she replies. "The quality of Teravision products is number one. We do our best every day to take the ... end user into consideration.


"Contrary to the belief of some of the people who have been cannibalizing the adult industry, it's my belief that consumers prefer a quality product over cheap crap; people really don't want crap. If you don't give the people what they want, they will find a way to get it elsewhere."


Prices for Mistress Couture lingerie range from $24.95 to $79.95. While the line is available now at, Tera Patrick is still actively searching for additional retailers to carry the line. Her hopes are that retailers with clientele ranging from exotic dancers to couples will be able to increase their profits with Mistress Couture's cross-genre appeal.