Vestiaire Collective—the leading global community platform for pre-owned fashion—recently launched a campaign called Vintage Mania, which is an initiative aimed at celebrating the importance of vintage styles. In today’s sustainability-minded world, vintage clothing and resale fashions are the stylish alternative to shopping products in the fast fashion industry. By inviting vintage experts and stylists from around the world to select iconic pieces from the 1970s-2000s, the platform highlights a unique selection of must-have pieces that continue to inspire fashion today.
The collective’s leader, Sophie Hersan, wanted to invite vintage experts and stylists from around the world to help select iconic pieces from the 1970s and through the 2000s that, in some capacity, continue to inspire fashion styles today. These pieces would become staple items in their newest campaign, Vintage Mania.
Hersan selected four of her favorite vintage authorities to curate their “Only On Vestiaire” edit, which represented fashion from the past four decades. Those selected included fashion critic Alexander Fury, stylist Bay Garnett, designer Sami Miro and fashion director Suzanne Koller—all of whom have sifted through the platform’s extensive catalog to handpick the best of each decade. Key pieces included a 1970s Celine top, a 1980s Jean Paul Gaultier corset and Alaia studded gloves, a 1990s Margiela biker jacket, and a 2000s Dior set fit for Paris Hilton.
We spoke with Vestiaire Collective co-founder and fashion director, Sophie Hersan, about the goal of the Vintage Mania campaign, the importance of giving clothing pieces a second life through resale, and what the future looks like for the brand:
Green Living: What inspired the launch of the Vintage Mania campaign?
Sophie Hersan: We’ve found that vintage is one of our fastest growing categories over the last few years. Many of our members are turning to vintage & archival pieces as they offer the ability to express a unique sense of style and are part of fashion history. Inspired by this, our vintage campaign highlights the last 4 decades of fashion history.
GL: Shopping vintage or upcycled fashions is a simple and stylish way to support the planet.
SH: As sustainability and conscious shopping have become more popular, have you similarly seen a trend in consumer’s desire to shop vintage styles?
Yes, especially after COVID-19. The pandemic has accelerated the consumer’s growing interest in sustainability and a more conscientious way to shop. As a result, we’ve seen vintage experience a 140% growth in YoY orders. Choosing vintage is more sustainable because the timeless style and quality of the pieces has allowed it to remain trendy today!
GL: How were the curators for the ‘Only On Vestiaire’ edit chosen?
SH: We selected 4 of our favorite vintage experts, including journalist and fashion critic Alexander Fury, vintage stylist Bay Garnett AKA the “Queen of Thrift,” sustainable designer Sami Miro and fashion director Suzanne Koller. Each expert selected one decade that resonated with them from the 1970s to 2000s and utilized their extensive knowledge of fashion history to curate some of the most unique, rare and desirable pieces available on Vestiaire Collective.
GL: Did you see a trend in the sorts of items they picked for each decade?
SH: Many of the pieces they selected have seen a renewed interest amongst brands as they’ve recently reissued many heritage designs. For example, Gucci brought back their iconic Jackie bag, as well as Celine’s Triomphe and Fendi’s Baguette. Our members are very savvy and pick up on trends as they happen, so our experts also selected many iconic pieces from John Galliano’s sought-after ready-to-wear and Ghesquière-era Balenciaga. Both saw a huge uptick in sales over the last few months, as seen in our latest data report The Smart Side of Fashion.
GL: Is there a growing market for luxury brands to reintroduce full vintage campaigns, rather than just handpicked items?
SH: I think that, especially after COVID-19, brands are going to become more creative. Margiela, for example, used vintage pieces frequently in his work in the ‘90s. Many young designers like Sami Miro, who curated our 2000s edit, are utilizing upcycling as a way to create something new from the past. As consumers continue to show interest in sustainability, I believe that brands will respond accordingly and reference archives and pre-loved pieces in their collections.
GL: When you founded Vestiaire Collective, did you ever anticipate the scale and global reach it would have today?
SH: It’s more than we could ever dream of! Vestiaire Collective was one of the original resale platforms founded over a decade ago to build a community of fashion lovers who wanted a more sustainable way to enjoy current-season trends. We’ve now grown to a community of over 10 million members in 90 countries! Our shared love for fashion, trust and sustainability has found a passionate audience.
GL: What is your favorite vintage capsule item that you own? (Brand, year, style, color, etc.)
SH: My favorite vintage piece is a Rolex Oyster watch from the 1980s. It has a black case back with a jubilee bracelet. My second favorite piece has to be my Givenchy Couture jumpsuit from the 1990s. I found both on Vestiaire Collective!
GL: What does the future of Vestiaire Collective look like? Are there any other exciting campaigns or initiatives that consumers can look forward to?
SH: We plan to continue to empower our global community of fashion activists to promote sustainability and circularity. Right after Vintage Mania, we will be launching our Secondhand September campaign in partnership with Oxfam to challenge consumers to not buy anything new for an entire month. Our members will also be able to earn our new Fashion Activist badge by buying and selling second-hand.
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