ThredUp, the fashion resale platform, launched its first clothing line Tuesday that’s designed specifically for the resale market.
Called Remade, the new line was designed with an eye on the massive amounts of data ThredUp has collected regarding what kinds of clothes do well in the resale market.
“The resale market reflects the apparel market,”said Karen Clark, vp of marketing communications and partnerships at ThredUp. “When a trend surges in fashion, it also surges in resale. But there are also longer-term trends in resale, and Remade was designed with timeless style in mind: We aren’t looking at what did well in the last three months but [instead] at what always does well in resale historically.”
For ThredUp, this means classic products like chambray shirts and wrap dresses in solid colors.
The creation of a clothing line that is designed to be resold is meant to ensure not only that the resale economy continues to thrive but also that when customers do decide to resell those clothes, they will do so through ThredUp. Each piece, when sold back to ThredUp, is guaranteed to be worth at least 40 percent of its original value.
The incentive for customers to sell back to ThredUp is meant to make the platform more competitive with other resale platforms. In 2017, the company brought in $100 million in revenue, while its more upscale competitor The RealReal earned around five times that.
Research from Fung Global puts the fashion resale market at $33 billion by 2021. This has been driven by the changing ways people, particularly younger consumers, think about their clothes.
“There are a set of consumers who shop with resale in mind,” said Clark. “As more consumers embrace resale, they are thinking about their closets as fluid. They are buying with the intent to resell.”
ThredUp has also tagged each piece from the line with a QR tag that will allow it to be tracked through its lifecycle as it is bought, sold and resold among many customers.
“One of the biggest challenges for us is if we get an item we don’t know anything about it,” Clark said. “We have to input all its attributes into the system so it’s searchable online.”
The announcement of the new clothing line comes at a time of expansion for ThredUp. Just a few months ago, in March, the company announced plans to open new stores until it operates more than 100, expected to be in the next few years.
“For an industry like resale, you win by being top of mind. When someone has something they want to get rid of, you have to be the company they think of first. You do that through convenience,” said Kasey Lobaugh, chief retail innovation officer at Deloitte, in an interview with Glossy earlier this year. “That’s where customers respond best. Not to mention, the inventory models help these companies avoid the common pitfalls like unwieldy overhead. It’s basically a ground’s race now.”
Remade was also created with sustainability in mind. As consumers continue to focus on constant “closet refreshes,” as Clark put it, resale offers a more sustainable alternative to dumping clothes in the trash.
“Resale, much like rental, is one of the tools consumers are using to power closet refreshes,” she said. “Unfortunately, consumers are buying more and discarding clothes faster. There is a responsible way to refresh your closet without unnecessarily filling up landfills.”