This astute and well researched article by Kim Bhasin appeared on Bloomberg dotcom late last year. 

Here's the takeaway:

"There's a war brewing over the junk in people's closets, as investors funnel cash into the online clothing resale business, backing more than a dozen companies, each looking to capitalize..."

But we are not. "Refashioner strives to curate unique items," Kim writes. Yes indeed. Because I don't want my interesting clothes to be warehouse fodder, and I don't think you do either. 

Above is a Thredflip warehouse, and here's one of the RealReal's...

Depressing! I'm not just being sentimental about clothes, I'm sad that it's the same old business pattern:





When you apply this pattern to the old clothes trade it doesn't work. They hope you won't notice because they need your inventory, but THEY are capitalizing, WE are short-changed. A resale site at scale is brutal. To please their moneymen, they must reject half your pieces, sell the rest too cheap, and keep a huge chunk of that price. In other words, huge resale sites work for VCs not for you and your closet. 

But why?

Why does it have to be big? 

I don't just mean clothes resellers, though their bigness can kill them (recently deceased: Threadflip, Copious, Twice--which sold its talent to the biggest of all: Ebay), but business as usual. This sounds dumb because we are so used to perceiving bigness as success but please, let's try NOT scaling. NOT capitalizing. Let's see how that helps the world. 

Because if we don't, what do we get? We get Donald Trump.

Have you had a bad experience selling your clothes online? Or a good one? After all, big also means more buyers...

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    April 29, 2016

    I love your commentary and beliefs – the Fashion World and actually most of the “Western World” is so into making money on the backs of other people. I am so tired of hearing that success=$$$$ – what happened to caring for each other, making sure your neighbour is coping, loving someone for who they are and what good they do rather than how much money they make or what kind of car they drive. Thank you for this blog and bringing to light some of these stories. ( I hadn’t heard about the Top Shop thing and I am a bit shocked at them)

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