Where is the party? How to navigate the second-hand clothing market

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As economies reopen and international vaccine rollout programs see travel restrictions relaxed, gatherings – both indoor and outdoor – are growing in popularity. Consumers are embracing their new freedoms, and many are planning summer vacations and attending small events and celebrations. Brands should take note that new dress codes for meetings need to be versatile. Comfort and cost considerations remain two key factors in purchasing decisions when it comes to purchasing event clothing.

Versatile and adaptable

Budgets aren’t likely to stretch for shoppers buying new clothes and accessories for every occasion, which means pieces need to be versatile and adaptable to a multitude of possibilities. Tops remain a bestseller category, especially those that can be worn under different looks and outfits. Summer dresses are easy to wear and stylish on their own or paired with a blazer. A blouse with a soft volume goes with pants or a skirt cut on the bias. Customers will look for higher quality fabrics, away from the t-shirts, jeans, and loungewear that dominated lockdown wardrobes. Consider clothing with a trans-seasonal appeal, which can be worn throughout the year.

Whatever the social occasion

Many events have been missed and postponed from last year, from weddings and anniversaries to company milestones and anniversaries. In order to test the demand for second-hand clothing, smaller lots can be introduced through direct-to-consumer channels and indicate which categories will be best received by buyers. While full-fledged glamor might take a long time until the end of the year, on-trend pieces and high heels retail well, but for these categories, price is still the key. For anything formal, like weddings, classic and timeless qualities will be most successful as they will be seen as investment purchases.

Rent

There is an emerging trend to wear designer clothes without beneficial ownership, especially among younger consumers, and brands may consider renting formal wear. In addition, increased awareness of sustainable clothing and the positive environmental effects of sharing and reusing clothing is another factor in its success. The global rental market is expected to grow at a rate of 10.76% over the next two years to $ 1.96 billion according to Marketwatch. Sharing, instead of owning, allows online clothing rental services to operate a brand and price-conscious consumers to try on a wide variety of outfits without purchasing them.

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