The pre-loved fashion sector has been soaring across the world over the last few year with consumers eager to:
a) help lessen the environmental impact of the fashion industry and reduce their carbon footprint
b) grab a discounted designer piece or something super rare
c) make some money clearing out their wardrobes.
The global pre-loved fashion market is valued at over Dhs73.4 billion, with a potential to double by 2022. The UAE has been well… *slower* at adapting to this. In the US, 1 in 5 stores are resale, whereas here in the UAE it is only 0.01%. Described by many as the most amazing luxury shopping destination in the world, why would anyone in the UAE want to buy pre-loved fashion?
RETOLD is a pre-loved fashion concept founded by Sian Rowlands, which offers a sustainable way to shop high-street, designer and luxury pieces. Prolonging an items life cycle by as little as 2 months can reduce its carbon footprint by up to 10%. These figures could have a huge impact on our environment, especially considering that fashion is currently the second biggest contributor to industrial pollution.
“In some cultures, there is still a social stigma attached with pre-loved clothes, a stigma which we are working on removing”, Sian says “just like we need to reduce the use of single use plastic we also need to reconsider our approach towards the clothes we buy and discard”.
When asked about the inspiration and origin of RETOLD, Sian tells us she was previously a shopaholic. When it came to mass clear-out she realised that more than half of the things she was getting rid of still had tags on them (we’re guilty too!). She knew a lot of people with similar shopping habits and it became clear to her that there was definitely a gap in the market here.
With just a quick browse on the RETOLD site I’ve found a Louis Vuitton clutch at a bargainous Dhs 550, some brand-new gladiator style Jimmy Choo heels with up to 70% off and a Zara pleated skirt I’ve been trying to track down for weeks! And I’m helping the environment? Sold!