SYW: A Year in Review
words by Hasna
January 1, 2021
Our founder Hasna Kourda reflects on the first nine months of Save Your Wardrobe, and invites you to join us on a journey to reconnect with your clothes in 2021.
When we launched Save Your Wardrobe on March 3 2020, we had no idea the Covid-19 pandemic was about to put our lives on pause. Our intentions at launch were simple: to help users reconnect with their clothes by digitising them to our platform and using our repair, cleaning and upcycling services. Seeing what we own on the scroll unlocks 80% of unworn clothing back into use, and encourages us to buy less. This has a measurable benefit to the planet and its resources.
Our plans are super ambitious – in the UK, where we’re based, consumers buy more new clothes than anywhere else in Europe and throw away over a million tons of clothing annually. How do we get the Save Your Wardrobe message through to people for whom shopping is a national feel-good past-time?
Covid-19 became this incredible opportunity for us, wrapped up in the curse of this novel virus. We hoped to launch quietly, with no-one looking (!) but within a week and huge thanks to support from the Apple Editorial Team, BBC and Forbes – not to mention more people at home with time on their hands – a community began to form around us.
In our first week of launch, Save Your Wardrobe was highlighted by Apple as “New and Greatest App to download”, and nine months later – we were honoured by being the only fashion start up to make “App of the Day” and “Great Apps of 2020” in Apple’s App Store.
One of my highlights of 2020 was collaborating with the excellent consumer researchers Professor Deirdre Shaw and Dr Kat Duffy at the Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow to produce “Digitalising Sustainable Consumption”.
This report speaks to Save Your Wardrobe users, who shared their changing thinking around fashion consumerism throughout the pandemic.
“This idea of buying something every week and wearing it and posting a picture, is just a cycle. I really like that Save Your Wardrobe lets you see what you already have in a different light. It makes you feel like you’ve had something new…when I shared it with my followers, that is what I said… Because especially we all want new things all the time and this is kind of what was so appealing to me about the app. What I thought would resonate with a lot of people was that.”
Another highlight is our 12 Steps to Fashion Citizenship, a step-by-step guide to permanently changing your relationship with your clothes.
This is only the very beginning of our journey with you and the wider world. Next year we will see our services spread across the country, to your local dry-cleaner or repair shop, to large retail areas where you will be able to engage with us in person.
Until then, I’d like to extend a special thanks to Mehdi Doghri and the whole SYW incredible team, G+B, our Service Partners for their trust, and Orsola de Castro, Tom Meggle, Melanie Rickey, Katie Baron, Matthew Drinkwater, Richard Seward, Fabio Maffioli, Zane Holt, The Apple Editorial Team, Farfetch and all the people who believe in and support our mission.
Happy New Year – tell 2021 we’re coming to Save Your Wardrobe!