Last year I wrote a post on fast fashion in response to Stacey Dooley's eyeopening documentary and the UN climate change report which put fashion production as one of the top two polluters and the volume of fashion consumption and production as one of the key contributors to global warming. Within my post I articulating some of my own thoughts and ways in which I wanted to cut down on my fast fashion consumption and seek alternative ways to enjoy fashion without over consuming. In an attempt to practice what I preach and positively change my shopping habits, i've recently been dipping my toe in the rental fashion market and wanted to share my experience with you. So what is rental fashion? Well, its exactly what it says on the tin; rental services allow you to enjoy new (to you) clothes on a loaning basis, encouraging sharing what has already been produced rather than constantly purchasing new which cuts the demand and therefore the volume of clothes produced and wasted.
My rentals from The Endless Wardrobe: De La Vali Vivienne dress and Alexa Chung Daisy midi dress
The Endless Wardrobe
First up is The Endless Wardrobe, who contacted me back in June after reading my blog post on fast fashion and asked if i'd like to try out their newly launched service. They have an amazing collection of pieces for rent, from brands including Alexa Chung, De La Vali and Free People. I borrowed the most beautiful green silk De La Vali dress for a black tie event I went to in July and felt completely amazing in it (Kiera Knightly in atonement vibes). If you are looking for evening or occasion ware I implore you to check them out, not only do you get to wear a beautiful dress to an event, something that you likely wouldn't be able to afford or justify buying yourself, you return it afterwards for someone else to enjoy thus allowing that piece to live longer and ultimately cutting down on the amount of one-wear purchases.
My By Rotation rentals: WALD Berlin Shell Necklace, Reformation Marabella dress and Faithfull Opatija dress
Another exciting company on the scene is By Rotation, a peer-to-peer rental platform with circularity via community as it's core value. By Rotation offers a more sustainable approach to one’s wardrobe, not only can you rent items, but you are also encouraged to lend what you don't wear frequently thus being kind to the planet, your wardrobe and your wallet at the same time. Brands you'll find on their platform include Reformation, Wald Berlin, Ganni, Realisation Par, Rixo and Zimmerman to name just a few. I find their platform super easy to use both to navigate but also to list my own items to rent. It has a real community feeling to it, predominately using lenders own styled images to showcase the item available and reminds me of the way Airbnb works in terms of a marketplace built on trust and authenticity.
They are also just about to launched an app which will be the first of its kind, making sharing your wardrobe accessible and convenient by lending, renting and manage your account on the go. Keep an eye on their Instagram to be the first to hear about the launch.
My HURR Collective rentals: (top left to right) Love Shack Fancy Coralie dress, Sleeper Atlanta dress, Realisation Par Iggy dress and Realisation Par Jeet dress
One of the UK's first peer-to-peer wardrobe rental platform, HURR is on a mission to make renting an everyday occurrence. There platform uses real-time ID verification and geo-tagging to ensure secure and trusted way to share your wardrobe, they promote communicating directly with the lender via a chat function and encourage meet-up to exchange rental items. I love the idea of meeting up as it allows you to put a face to the person you are lending to or renting from and creates a network of like-minded women using the platform, so far i've met for both renting and lending and found it a simple and easy process. In terms of brands, HURR boast a veritable array from Rixo, Chloe, Gucci, Sleeper, Love Shack Fancy, Acne and Shrimps and they have an impressive catalogue of Realisation Par dresses. Keep an eye on their Instagram for some exciting things coming up from them this autumn.
My Rental Wardrobe:
I've also got lots of my own pieces ready to rent, you can find my wardrobe on both By Rotation and Hurr Collective, you'll need to sign up to view them but i've added a few images below of what you'll find including Realisation Par, Faithful, Rixo and Love Shack Fancy.
Overall, i've been hugely impressed with all three rental platforms i've trialled and believe this type of service has, and will continue to, really revolutionised the way we shop and consume fashion. The amount of clothes I have accumulated over time is more than one person could possible need in a lifetime, and although I do give to charity and sell my clothes on both Ebay and Depop, rental fashion opens a new door to sharing that creates a more environmentally healthy way to continue wearing and loving fashion.
*All rentals were complimentary in exchange for social content and reviews