Looking back to the latest retail news regarding sustainability and Fashion as a Service, and putting together the pieces of the puzzle, we could conclude that New Retail is a result of product-brand experience mixed by the changing patterns of consumption.
Fresh could be different from new. Fashion customers are expecting products to be trendy but this is not exclusive to brand-new items. Giving a second chance to old or unused clothing doesn’t mean killing the fashionability attribute of the item. Therefore, recycling and upcycling are increasing in popularity.
source: Vestiaire Collective
Shopping is not the end of the value chain any more. Shopping and consumption are part of the loop where an item can be used and reused, in a circular economy process. Second hand and rental clothing are delivering high-quality experiences too.
But, in my opinion, the circular economy experience should be an unwritten law between supply and demand. Not only the product should be sustainable but also customer consumerism. Sustainability is a customer attitute too. Keep calm, think and shop.
Thred Up, The RealReal or Vestiaire Collective are some of the companies that are leading the new way of shopping. Customers are not willing to own everything they use, so renting a product or buying second hand is a good way to save money for other experiential activities. These companies are investing in excellent product images and descriptions, customer service, stylism, quality, authenticity control, amongst others.
Vestiaire Collective @ Selfridges
Recently, Vestiaire Collective announced that will open its first permanent store in Womens Designer Studio at Selfridges, Oxford Street London. After testing popup stores, the luxury recommerce decided to open this new space. The partnership is a good example of how department stores are reinventing their product assortment approach and customer experience, while pure players with fashion as a service business models are entering the physical arena. A partnership to promote sustainability and circular economy too.
Rent The Runway and Nordstrom increasing partnership
Then, in regards of rental clothing, Rent The Runway and Nordstrom recently announced to increase their collaboration. According to Fast Company, the partnership includes co-creation of products while including Nordstrom inventory into Rent the Runway system and increasing rental drop off at Nordstrom locations.
Patagonia opens a Second Hand store
Finally, Patagonia opened a pop store in Boulder to sell used clothing, following its efforts to contribute in a circular economy and foster its Common Threads Initiative: Reduce, Repair, Reuse, Recycle and Reimagine.