Madewell and thredUP have launched a pop-up called “A Circular Store” that will feature secondhand Madewell pieces sourced from thredUP. The shop, which is set to operate in New York City’s Williamsburg neighborhood from late September through the end of October 2021, will emphasize educating shoppers about why clothes should be made to last.
A Circular Store is an extension of the online Madewell Forever denim resale experience, marking the first time the initiative will be available in a physical space. The location also will feature an in-store mending station (saving 19 lbs. of annual carbon output per item repaired), circular packaging such as reusable cotton bags and a curated collected of Madewell styles, sourced from thredUP, with prices ranging from $10 to $40.
QR codes at various stations will provide educational advice on how to “buy, wear, care, and pass on your clothes for the planet.” The shop also will host programming from local designers and educational brands, including upcycling and repair workshops with Patagonia‘s Worn Wear team.
The Madewell Forever resale program is powered by thredUP’s Resale-as-a-Service platform. The two brands aim to double the life of each recirculated garment through the program, with the goal of collecting 1 million pieces of denim clothing by 2023. This would be twice as much as what Madewell has collected over the last six years through its denim trade-in program.
“For too long, the fashion industry has operated with a linear, disposable model,” said Erin Wallace, VP of Integrated Marketing at thredUP in a statement. “We’ve designed a store to represent the future of fashion — a circular future in which retailers design for longevity, and consumers shop with resale in mind. Our hope is that visitors will leave inspired and armed with the knowledge they need to take a more sustainable approach to their wardrobes. We believe that retail and resale working together is a necessary next step in achieving our vision of a circular future for fashion.”
Circular commerce has been gaining popularity across the retail industry as shoppers demand greater sustainability efforts from brands. Recent examples include:
- Fernish, which has brought the concept to furniture with a parts and fabric replacement program, as well as an 11-step guide to sanitation and refurbishment, to let customers rent items for anywhere from two months to one year;
- Amazon’s FBA Grade and Resell program, which gives third-party sellers tools to sell returned products on the marketplace as “used” items; and
- IKEA’s Buy Back & Resell pilot: a Pennsylvania store will purchase gently used, functional and fully assembled IKEA furniture for store credit, then make those items available for resale in the store’s AS-IS section.