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Is it worth renting your clothes MY WARDROBE HQEverybody loves a side hustle. Look at your wardrobe and there is probably hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds worth of merchandise not earning its keep. It’s just hanging there, not being worn or potentially earning you money. Enter the peer-to-peer rental scheme.

It’s tempting. Under the guise of being better for the environment, women are hiring out their wardrobes for a fee. The companies facilitating this are earning a commission from each hire. The business model makes sense. There’s no initial outlay and money tied up in stock for the businesses and much like other service companies - Uber, Airbnb, eBay -  the majority of work is done by the individuals, while they cream off the commission. Sounds easy.

Left - MYWARDROBE HQ - CHANEL - Perfume Bottle Clutch - FROM £147 / DAY (RRP £15,000)

But, is this nascent industry working for lenders - those hiring their clothes out - and is it sustainable enough for this sector to scale? This business is only as good as its lenders and the product they can offer at a price which is attractive to others. Companies, such as HURR Collective and MY WARDROBE HQ, need to keep these individuals engaged, encouraged and make it as seamless as possible, while being low enough to keep people hiring frequently.

The current MY WARDROBE HQ mail-outs are enticing with £325 Rixo dresses for £8, or Simone Rocha fur stoles for £23 a day. At these prices, renting finally makes sense for many. It says customers can shop womenswear clothing and accessories from the wardrobes of Arizona Muse, Poppy and Chloe Delevingne, Olivia Buckingham, Roxie Nafousi, Caroline Fleming, amongst other fashion stylists and influencers. Victoria Prew

Founded in 2018 by Sacha Newall and Tina Lake, MY WARDROBE HQ is now chaired by Jane Shepherdson, of Topshop & Whistles fame and has just opened a pop-up in London department store Liberty until 31st March 2020. 

HURR Collective, founded in 2017, too has launched its first in-store wardrobe rental pop-up at Selfridges, London for six months. Available to rent for either four or eight days, the stock will rotate on a weekly basis and there will be specially curated London Fashion Week, Valentines Day and Holiday edits.

The value of unused clothing in wardrobes has been estimated at £30 billion with an estimated £140 million of clothing going to landfill annually in the UK alone. The fashion rental industry is projected to reach $1.96 billion by 2023.

Sarah Angus, Content Director, MY WARDROBE HQ, say, “Customers can choose a rental term that suits their occasion; 4, 7, 10 or 14 days, and we can extend this further if they require. We have customers that rent for each and all of these terms - the 10 day particularly suits holidays/vacations, while the 4 day rental is perfect for interviews and events such as LFW.” 

“Lenders make 60% of every rental or sale. Our business model includes a resale element also which has seen renters rent something, love it, and then buy it for the difference.” she says. "Our unique business model means that we manage everything for the lender; people nowadays are time poor and don’t have the time to manage things like this, but they’re conscious of the damage fashion is doing to the planet and want to do good (and also earn some cash for it). We manage the whole service from intake, photography, storage, cleaning, delivery and returns. The lenders in return receive a monthly pay cheque, minus our commission.” she says.

“We have approximately 150 lenders and this is an almost even split between individuals and brands. We have seen such huge support for the managed service that we are offering and have some big name brands joining our platform this week which we can’t wait to share!” says Angus. “We are really discerning with the items that are available on our platform and as such screen and select individuals to ensure the items are of the best condition to rent and buy. We photograph, clean and manage all the items you see on the platform so that customers can view, rent and buy the items in a premium environment.” she says.

“We price items to rent at 10% of RRP and to sell at 30% of RRP. Some items such as Chanel and Gucci retain their value so we always confer with the lender and decide a suitable price.” says Angus. “Brands in particular are tapping into this and we have seen huge uptake with brand partners, including Coach, Mulberry, Diane von Furstenberg, Temperley, Needle & Thread, Vivienne Westwood, Perfect Moment, Beulah, Chinti and Parker, all signed to MY WARDROBE HQ.”

Is it worth renting your clothes fashion rental Hurr Collective

“Our target customer is ABC1, 28-35; she recognises the damage fashion is having on the planet and wants access to items that ensure a ‘Cinderella’ moment. These are wow pieces that would cost a lot to buy but can be experienced at a fraction of the cost.” she says.

“Rental is the future!” says Angus. “Consumers care less about ownership and want to experience rather than own material things; just look at Uber, Netflix, Spotify and Airbnb, all of whom own no stock. Designers are reducing their collections or ceasing completely - Jean Paul Gaultier famously just showed his last collection and actually up-cycled his couture collection to make a stand against the damage fashion is having on the planet. 

Why buy the copycat version on the high street when you can rent it from the designer that inspired it, for the same price?” she says.

“On the HURR platform you can rent for 7, 14, 21 and 28 days. This week we launched in Selfridges where you can rent for 4 days, exclusive to the pop-up.” says Victoria Prew, CEO & Co-Founder, HURR Collective.

On the HURR Collective platform the lender makes 85% of each rental, while HURR take a 15% commission. For example, you can rent a £170 Ganni dress for £32 for 7 days.

Right - Don't lose it! The infamous Jacquemus handbag from HURR Collective

“We use data-driven insights and customer spending behavioural data to suggest prices that balance both affordability to the renter and profitability to the lender. This results in a pricing model which makes it 'worthwhile' to both parties.” says Prew. “We take a tech-first approach to pricing, by consistently analysing our pricing algorithms to optimise and balance the number of rentals, and rental income.” she says.

“The number one reason for signing up to HURR is sustainability. Our user base is largely millennial and is deeply passionate and informed about sustainable fashion and the circular economy.” says Prew. “HURR is set to scale throughout the UK this year, with international expansion on the horizon. As we don't hold stock there's no limit on the number of users, their location or the number of items that can be listed.” she says.

People wearing/sharing their clothes more has to be good for the environment if it means people are buying less, but, while these look like retail sites, with the feeling of full options, these rental websites are restricted by sizing and the volume of the items stocked. They need to keep both parties happy, particularly those individuals renting their prized pieces.

Kate, 36,  from London, recently decided to rent via these rental platforms, “I have quite a few designer items that I’ve bought over the years which I rarely wear, I didn’t want to sell any of them but it seemed a waste to just have them hung in a wardrobe … plus its a great way to earn a bit of extra money ;)” she says. “I googled clothing rental sites some time ago and HURR and MY WARDROBE HQ looked the best ones. 

“It was quite soon after HURR launched, I requested to register as a lender, uploaded a couple of pieces and didn’t think much more of it.” she says. “One of the girls from HURR got in touch with me a few weeks later and said they were setting up a pop-up shop and wanted some pieces they could hold in the store. I sent over the items I wanted to rent and then they helped me upload everything on to the website”, she says.

“Both websites are super easy to upload. The HURR team uploaded most of the items for me (I think they offer a service for this, I’m not sure if MY WARDROBE HQ does) so it was really convenient and the photos/descriptions are perfect as they know what renters are looking for.” says Kate.

“The items HURR are holding for the pop-up - customers try on and rent in store - HURR handle all of this I just get a confirmation and payment. They also look after cleaning.” she says. “The pieces not held in the pop-up - the renter will put in a request on the website, sometimes there is some chat via message about size / fit etc. Once I’ve accepted the request (you can choose not to lend the item). she says. “I arrange postage/delivery. When the rental period has ended the renter posts/delivers back the item and I arrange for the item to be cleaned. I think its best I handle cleaning - I can ensure its cleaned exactly as it should be.”

“If the item doesn’t fit, the renter has 24hrs to process a fit return, once returned they receive a refund minus shipping/cleaning.” she says. “HURR has been great, always on hand to help with any tech issues or questions. It’s great that they hold some of the pieces in the pop-up as I think its more likely they will be rented (especially now they have a pop up in Selfridges) - plus I don’t have to deal with the logistics of renting.” she says. “MY WARDROBE HQ - I’ve loaded pieces but none of my pieces have been rented yet so I’m not sure how smooth it runs.” she says.

Is it worth renting your clothes MY WARDROBE HQ

“Positives - I get to make some money from items just sat in my wardrobe. I’m also keen to do my part in making the fashion industry more sustainable and I think this is one small step towards creating some change.” says Kate. “Negatives - - if something gets damaged and can’t be replaced / fixed  - The HURR team advise not to rent items that have sentimental value and if you’re not comfortable renting something once a request comes in you don’t have to, so fingers crossed nothing will go wrong.”

Left - MY WARDROBE HQ - The Vampire's Wife - Velvet Tea Dress - FROM £18 / DAY (RRP £995)

“Renting with HURR has been no hassle, especially while they are holding the clothes for the pop-up and I don’t I need to do anything.” says Kate. “I’ve made enough to buy a new pair of shoes.” she says. “The pieces I have listed for rental are designer dresses/statement/party pieces. A Dolce & Gabbana sequin dress got a lot of interest over the Christmas period. I only rent clothes - not shoes or bags.” she says.

The daily rates are slightly misleading because you can’t rent anything for a single day. Both companies have a minimum of 4 days. The designer rental market, up until now, has been quite expensive and for special occasions. Too expensive and you may as well buy the item, too cheap and you can’t provide the service or convince the lenders to offer their precious items. For example, Scottish manufacturer, Begg & Co., was offering to rent a scarf for £160 for 2 weeks, last autumn. Surely, you’d buy it outright if you could afford £160 to rent a scarf? It's no longer an option on their website.

Renting is about Instagrammable, look-at-me pieces. These business models are restricted by only usually having one item, in one size, so it could be difficult to scale the business. It also needs to have a lot of ‘must-have’, desirable items to keep up the demand.

MY WARDROBE HQ’s marketing offers a £1300 Victoria Beckham dress for £22 a day, which will surely get people thinking differently about the rental market. Is there enough incentive and motivation for the lenders, we’ll have to see, but with brands joining the mix, this could be the answer for these growing companies. The designer brands will probably want to keep it on the down low to avoid it eating into retail sales, or put the 'sustainable' spin on it, but it could be a good way of making money from last season’s stock.

Will you carry on lending? “For sure”. says Kate. 

BUY TheChicGeek's new book - FASHIONWANKERS - HERE 

Published in Fashion
Tuesday, 12 June 2018 21:45

LFWM Spring 2019 HighLights Day 4

LFWM London Fashion Week Men's Menswear Gloverall Coat SS19

CHARLES JEFFREY

Judging by the queue, Jeffrey, and his gang of club kids, is still the golden ticket for East London menswear. The status even matches his yellow hair job.

The catwalk featured dancers and props, which looked like they were there for the marriage of Sarah Brightman to that Starship Trooper she fell in love with.

Metres of tin foil and oxygen pipes mingled with men’s, women’s and anything-in-between wear in a collection which looked more accomplished and retail than ever before. 

A standout was a denim jacket and matching jeans and also his tailoring for the contemporary Westwood-type customer. 

Jeffrey just needs to be careful the amateurish elements don’t take the focus away from the important stuff, but the new push to way-out-there commercial certainly suits his design sensibilities.

What did TheChicGeek wear? Credits - Coat - Gloverall, Sweater - Kent & Curwen, Sunglasses - Retrosuperfuture, Watch - Kronaby, Shirt - Jigsaw, Shoes - Sperry, Belt - Coach

See LFWM Day 1 - here

See LFWM Day 2 - here

Published in Fashion
Thursday, 20 July 2017 15:15

Tried & Tested Coach For Men

Review Coach For Men Fragrance

Coach introduces a new fragrance for men. It is said to have a New York attitude and an American authenticity. Coach For Men starts with an energetic top note of crisp and effervescent green Nashi pear. A spicy burst of cardamom adds warmth, complexity and a subtle touch of sweetness. The scent ends with a textured base of vetiver—earthy, woody and green—layered with hints of suede and ambergris.

Left - One of the best bottles I've seen this year Coach For Men

TheChicGeek says, “In the battle for mainstream luxury - which is where all the money is BTW - Coach have a real energy right now. They feel like they are leading, rather than following, and have, finally, made Coach a recognised and desired brand in the UK and Europe.

This is their first men’s fragrance under their new license deal - they were previously with Esteé Lauder.

I really like the packaging: the ombré flacon and embossed logo with the name on the a leather tag is strong yet subtle branding. Even the textured calf-skin-like finish on the box is a nice touch.

The juice is commercial, but, that’s expected. The best bit is the dry down which soft and warm and without anything jarring or dominating.

Review Coach For Men Fragrance James Franco

The face is James Franco. I thought they would have chosen somebody a bit younger. Coach has been pushing a more collegiate, youthful feel and James Franco, pushing 40, is a bit done and has been used by other brands before. I personally think of Chloe Moretz and Brooklyn Beckham as Coach’s target image now: young and cool. But, this fragrance certainly works on its own."

Right - Too old for the new Coach? The Coach For Men face James Franco. 

Coach For Men - Out 12th September 2017 40ml - 100ml - £29 - £62

Published in The Grooming Archives

Coach Regent Street Dinosaur RexyYou walk into the new Coach store on Regent Street and the first thing to confront you is Rexy, Coach’s T-Rex dinosaur. This isn’t the replacement for Dippy the Diplodocus, the Natural History Museum’s famous dinosaur, which is going on a regional tour, but it’s just as magnetic.

Left - Putting the sexy into Rexy!

The new store is impressive. It feels like a one-off. Coach has always been a perfectly acceptable, mid-market and luxury with a small l, brand. 

moving handbags coach regent streetRight - The handbags move around the Heath Robinson-type contraption

But, with this new store they’ve really stepped it up a gear. It shows a Creative Director - Stuart Vevers - putting himself into the brand and being allowed to do so. What they’ve done is thought about injecting personality and identity rather than focus solely on ‘luxury’. 
So many brands get fixated on luxury and forget about identity and personality. For some, it’s all about the Carrara marble and shiny finishes and they’ve started to look soulless, empty and, ultimately, boring. 

Rexy The Dinosaur Coach bags Regent Street

Left - Coach Regent Street's giant Rexy is going to be auctioned off

The new Coach store has a mechanical track with bags running along it, a giant pink neon dinosaur in the window and special product, downstairs, designed with British tourist badges and travel souvenir symbols. It’s fun without being gimmicky. It feels like somebody has thought about it rather than simply rolling out a format the world over. Yawn.

In contrast, I popped into the new handbag hall in Selfridges. The biggest in the world, when finished, it has all the usual suspects: Valentino, Celine, Balenciaga, Chanel, Burberry, all with their signature shop-fits. It all feels so predictable and formulaic. The only one of interest was Gucci with a mosaic floor featuring their, now, signature wasps. 

Luxury needs personality. It needs a strong individual to lead with instinct and intuition. Brands need to create newness and not just consistency. Coach seems to not only made Rexy sexy, but also fun. It's approachable and welcoming. If brands are going to get us off our sofas, offline and outside, there needs to be something worthy of going out for. 

Published in The Fashion Archives
Monday, 10 October 2016 09:53

#OOTD 90 Chic Geek AW16 Collections Coach

OOTD The Chic Geek Coach Menswear Bloggermenswear coach aw16 stuart veversCoach Creative Director, Stuart Vevers, has been slowly building Coach's fashion credibility. Expanding the American brand's fashion collections, including a full menswear show in London, the British designer is adding cool to Coach's accessory heritage.

This season was all about contrast leather jackets and  buffalo checked knitwear mixed with an element of 90s grunge.

Get involved #TheChicGeekCollections

Credits - All clothes & shoes Coach AW16

Shot by Robin Forster on OlympusPEN

The Chic Geek OOTD phone CoachMenswear The Chic Geek style icon blogger menswearStyle Menswear Brown leather jacketThe Chic Geek style menswear blogger CoachLondon blogger menswear The Chic GeekBoots Coach AW16 Top Picks Menswear

Published in Outfit of the Day
Friday, 23 September 2016 18:13

WIN TheChicGeek’s LCM Coach T Rex Bag Charm

Looking menacing on TheChicGeek’s seat at the recent Coach menswear show, during LCM, was this large T Rex bag charm. Designed to hang from your bag straps or you could simply put it sit on a shelf, it’s one of the signature designs from Coach’s Creative Director, Stuart Vevers.

Coach

CLOSING DATE: 18th October 2016 at 11.59pm - Winner(s) will be informed by email!

To WIN, simply answer the following question:

{loadformmaker 27}

Published in Competitions
Tagged under

bleach denim menswear trends london casely hayfordmenswear trends SS17 mihara yasuhiroWhere was everybody? That could have been the final statement when it came to London’s latest round of men’s shows and presentations. Having dropped from 77 to 57, the number of brands showing was a reflection in the current oversupply of fashion brands and collections. LCM felt a little vacant and, unfortunately, what was left didn’t exactly set the menswear world on fire.

Here are a few trends TheChicGeek spied to take us into the new year:

Bleached Wail

It's 40 years since punk first burst on to the British streetwear scene and to celebrate designers have been getting creative with a bottle of Domestos.

From Left - Casely-Hayford, Mihara Yasuhiro (See how to make your own pair of bleachers - here)

per gotesson menswear trends london SS17edward crutchley menswear mattresses the chic geekMattresses

Tracey Emin rang, she wants her spare bed back! Could it be a comment on generation rent and the nomad status of today’s young and creative generation or maybe it was simply the lazy option. Expect to see 'Dreams' as the headline sponsor of the next LCM or London Fashion Week Men’s as it is now called. 

From Left - Per Götesson, Edward Crutchley

menswear trends towelling siblingtowelling playsuit topman design ss17 the chic geek trends Playful Towelling

Nothing says 'playful' like Terry towelling. And while a playsuit maybe taking things too far, if you've got the legs...

From Left - Sibling, Topman Design

menswear trends ss17 craig greenmenswear trends ss17 craig green scarfFlag To The Mast

Tie your sartorial flag to the mast and dress like a walking United Nations.

Both Craig Green

Doodlebug

Colouring in is so 2015! Get that Sharpie out and start to doodle to your heart's content.

Below - Coach

menswear coach doodle jacket trends leather

giant zips menswear trends mihara yassuhirojw anderson zips menswear trends ss17menswear trends ss17 mihara yasuhiroProminent Zips

Zips go man-sized, this season, and take centre stage.

From Left - Mihara Yasuhiro, JW Anderson, Mihara Yasuhiro

menswear trends london grace wales bonnerFresh Seventies

Large lapels yet streamlined shapes make this a contemporary seventies revival.

Left - Wales Bonner (See more from this trend in Milan)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

menswear trends casely hayford tribal ss17menswear trends tribal grace wales bonnermenswear trends charles jeffrey the chic geekTribal

Fashion tribes take inspiration from ethnic jewellery and the play with masculinity and decoration.

Left - Casely-Hayford, Wales Bonner, Charles Jeffrey

menswear trends pink green jw andersonmenswear SS17 trends jw anderson pink greenPink/Green

The colour combo of the season. Bubblegum to fuchsia, lime to forest, these two colours work in every combination.

Both JW Anderson (See more from this trend in Milan)

Published in The Fashion Archives

Coach menswear chic geek style bloggerTheChicGeek takes a trip. Thanks to Coach and their new Spring 16 men’s capsule collection, TheChicGeek stands out from the crowd in bold colour and pattern.

Inspired by 60s West Coast psychedelia, the collection references everything from The Beach Boys, 90s New York hip-hop and the Kennedys. 

Stocked in three Selfridges stores - London, Birmingham & Manchester - and online, this collection has the style, simplicity and ease needed when travelling this summer.

The days of travelling in style are back! Where are you going? Get involved #CoachMens2016 

Credits - All Coach - C101 Low Top Sneakers, Tiger Print Leather Backpack, Psychedelic printed blouson (exclusive to Selfridges), Wild Cat Marine Tiger T-Shirt

Orange bench by Friso Kramer @rocketgallerythe chic geek coach menswear spring 2016camo sneakers trainers coach spring 2016psychedelic blouson coach menswear spring 2016coach menswear tiger t shirt the chic geek style iconcoach backpack tiger print bluethe chic geek style blogger menswear coachflatlay ootd coach the chic geek spring 2016

Published in Outfit of the Day
Monday, 22 February 2016 11:39

London AW16 Menswear Trends Scrapbook

menswear trends aw16 craig green coppermenswear trends aw16 katie eary copper colourmenswear trends aw 16 Topman Design copper colourmenswear trends aw 16 oliver spencer copper colourFrom the frow to standing at the back! TheChicGeek was all over the recent menswear shows at London Collections: Men. Here are the trends that caught his eye:

Copper - That highlight orange has become slightly dirtier and more grown up.

From Far Left - Craig Green, Katie Eary, Hopman Design, Oliver Spencer

  

 

  

menswear trends aw 16 topman design grungemenswear trends aw16 burberry grungemenswear trends grunge aw16 jw andersonGrunge - Nobody’s ever made money from selling grunge, it’s kind of the point, no?

From Far Left - Topman Design, Burberry, J.W. Anderson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

menswear trends aw 16 neck scarves margaret howell menswear trends aw 16 margaret howell neck scarvesNeck Scarves - Double knot it for accessory impact.

Both Margaret Howell

Soft 70s Teddy Bear Hair - Layers, Bowl Cut, or simply ask for an 'Abigail's Party' next time you're at the barbers.

Below From Left - Lou Dalton, Burberry

menswear trends aw 16 lou dalton seventies hairaw 16 menswear trends burberry 70s hair

menswear trends aw16 agi & sam midriffmenswear trends aw 16 astrid andersen midriffCropped Mid-Driff - Not since Mark Owen in the Relight My Fire Video have I been this excited about the male midriff. AW16's new, chilly erogenous zone!

From Far Left - Agi & Sam, Astrid Andersen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

menswear trends aw16 coach sheepskinmenswear trends aw 16 inside out sheepskin james longmenswear trends aw 16 1205 sheepskin coatInside Out Sheepskins - You could just turn last year's inside out, but it probably won't look as good!

From Far Left - Coach, James Long, 1205

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

menswear trends aw 16 sequins burberrymenswear trends aw 16 james long sequinsSequins - These were dress-down sequins on sportswear and simple tops.

Burberry, James Long

Silk - Menswear bedroom eyes with luxurious plain or printed silks in bedroom shapes.

Below - Katie Eary, Topman Design

menswear trends katie easy silk aw16menswear trends silk aw 16 topman design

Published in The Fashion Archives
Monday, 14 September 2015 16:10

#OOTD 51 - Chic Geek Collections - Coach 5/6

Coach menswear autumn winter 2015 geekcoach menswear 2015 sheepskinThe first menswear outing from American brand, Coach, saw some of the best and largest sheepskins of the season. New Creative Director, Brit, Stuart Vevers, reinterpreted his womenswear coats for men with huge furry pockets and contrast detailing ending with TheChicGeek in a look that would make Del Boy proud!

Credits -  All AW15 Coach

Coat Exclusive To Selfridges

Shot by Robin Forster on #OlympusPEN

sheepskin shearling menswear coachThe Chic Geek menswear style sheepskin coachcoach sneakers trainers mensCoach autumn style blogger menswearmenswear coach style sneakers 2015The Chic Geek style icon menswear

Published in Outfit of the Day
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