Move aside, fast mode. Continuous mode is likely to remain. Especially after the COVID-19 pandemic.
From celebrities and influencers to professionals and students, everyone is aware of where they spend their money and the environmental impact of lifestyle decisions. The road ahead is clear: minimalism and clean fashion.
Shreya Jain, 27, aims to capitalize on this changing mindset and combine it with her passion for fashion. He is the founder Cause of wear, a clothing startup that combines fashion, social awareness and sustenance.
Founded in December 2019 as an Instagram page, The Cause Wear was registered in June this year. That The Chennai-based startup allows customers to buy used clothes on its platform. The income generated from the sale of clothing which is contributed by people is directed to help people and groups who need immediate financial support.
Shreya is a graduate of commerce Stella Maris University, Chennai. Growing up, he loved fashion and wanted to build his own label. He did that when he was 18 years old.
After her marriage, Shreya joined family jewelry business and work with the design team, curating works for more than two years. He enjoyed his job, but he was passion for fashion continue to encourage him to do something in the field.
Given her family background in philanthropy, Shreya wanted to differentiate her work from “doing something bigger together a commercialized and profit-driven industry, “he informed me Your story.
At the end of 2018, Shreya saw great potential in one of her friends’ NGOs and the work she was doing. “But the only thing holding them back is an inconsistent shortage of funds and resources,” he said.
This, coupled with the idea that Shreya had tons of piles of clothes in her wardrobe that she didn’t want to wear, influenced her and gave birth to the idea of reusable fashion to help the community.
Although one can always donate clothes to NGOs and orphanages, Shreya believes that helping people financially buy whatever they need makes more sense.
Charity started at home and for the supplies of the first thrift shop, Shreya turned to her own closet.
“I pick some exclusive clothes that I rarely wear and resell them at events and offline spaces at lower prices,” he says.
For the first few exhibitions, Shreya made a donation 500 clothes from his own wardrobe. The overwhelming response he received motivated him to start his business: Cause Wear. Initially starting out as an Instagram page, The Cause Wear is now a listed company.
Fashion on the grounds
Since the last decade, fashion has been at the peak of commercialization and capitalism. The purpose of The Cause’s Wear is simple: it helps customers buy what they like, helps people sell what they don’t need, and in the process pays back to the community that has been neglected or supports goals that require a collective voice.
“We don’t just look at donating money to NGOs because this is short-term serotonin. Instead, we help people and groups who need immediate support and work to a point where they can become independent, ”said Shreya.
Cause Wear extends support to the transgender community, cause of education, to helping people pay rent, and for basic necessities such as food and clothing.
Startups are also focused on promote, disseminate and sell only reusable fashions to support sustainability. “For us, sustenance and social awareness are two important pillars,” added Shreya.
The cause of the wear when it works through Instagram and Facebook.
People who wish to donate clothes can contact them via social media or email them. In the first step, donors must submit a picture of the clothing they wish to donate. Once approved, the team collects clothes at the customer’s doorstep or asks a donor to ship them.
After the clothes reach the Cause of Wear, a quality inspection team Do it through a product inspection – buttons, seams, stains (if any), and collar problems, and then send it for dry cleaning. Post dry cleaning, a second round of quality checks done after clothes are sent for a photo shoot before photos are posted on social media.
Shreya decides the price herself and tries to keep it to a minimum. “The idea is not for profit. We want everyone to have the best in fashion and give products a second life, “he said.
For tops or shirts, the prices range from Rs 200 and Rs 500, for the buttocks; it rises to Rs 700. For dresses, the costs vary from brand to brand and range between Rs 800 and Rs 1,000. For designer clothes, such as dresses by Ritu Kumar, the costs are affordable Rs 2,000 and Rs 3,000.
According to its founder, The Cause Wear has more than 175+ subscribers, with more retention rates 40 percent. Average ticket size is Rs 500. The startup has sold more than 450 pieces of clothing so far, serving customers on a first come, first served basis. It accepts digital payments and bank transfers.
The Cause Wear team has four employees on the payroll, and three volunteers assisted in the process.
At the end of each month, the startup sets aside a portion of its revenue for processing and salary; the rest is donated for a purpose or individual. “Our aim is to have direct contact with that person rather than through an NGO. We want the impact to be immediate and to relate the story to them, “Said Shreya.
The Cause Wear recently helped Muthuma, a 45-year-old transgender woman, fund an idli cart to help her earn a living. The startup also helps Komali, a transgender woman, pay for her hostel rent while waiting for a job offer. Komali left her home and family to claim her femininity and live life on her own terms.
“We also had the opportunity to work with Grace Banu, a transgender activist, in June, helping with daily needs,” said Shreya.
Most of The Cause Wear’s sales in August were used to help Shubhashini, a car driver in Chennai whose husband abandoned her, to fund her son’s education.
On October 15th which is celebrated as World Student Day, The Cause Wear partnered with Apollo Cancer Center in Chennai. The proceeds from the sale help provide cellphones and laptops to students to help with their online education.
Market overview and road ahead
A report by Statista shows that the market value of the used clothing market worldwide is worth $ 5 billion. Includes Indian thrift stores Rescue Story, Collection Spin, Groovy Thrift Store, and Assortments, among others.
“The Cause Wear’s happy stories about empowerment are our USP,” said Shreya.
Since the idea of a thrift shop was born in India, Shreya had to face challenges at first convince people about the products he lists on social media. “We are constantly making people aware of the sustainability factor of reuse fad with our communications on social media, “he said.
Currently operating in Chennai, Shreya’s dream is take The Cause Wear across the country.
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