Today, in the ultimate closet purge, the Kardashian clan began selling lightly used and never worn outfits and accessories to fans. Starting at noon Eastern time today, visitors to KardashianKloset.com could pony up for some of the finery seen on the show as well as other personal items.
Sold tags quickly popped up on a $700 Givenchy blouse owned by Kim Kardashian West, Kris Jenner’s Fendi logo tunic ($595), and Kylie Jenner’s Gucci diaper bag ($1,000.)
In launching a resale business, the Kardashian-Jenners join one of apparel’s fastest growing sectors.
There’s tremendous cachet in secondhand shopping these days. It’s seen as savvy and sustainable, part of the treasure hunt of scoring unique looks. One in three women shopped secondhand in 2017, according to ThredUp, an online consignment and thrift store that compiles an annual report on the resale industry. This year, resale apparel is expected to reach $28 billion in sales, according to retail analytics firm GlobalData. Within a decade, secondhand goods are predicted to reach $64 billion, surpassing fast fashion—the nickname for quickly-made, low-cost garments that critics say generate enormous environmental waste.
Leading resellers include The Real Real, Poshmark, Tradesy, and ThredUp, which lists roughly 15,000 new items daily. The top five brands with the best resale value on ThreadUp are Frye, Kate Spade, Tory Burch, Burberry and Ugg. Practical items—in particular Madewell’s leather crossbody and Patagonia’s winter coats — also perform well.
In contrast, Kardashian Kloset is stuffed with fantasy: full-length minks, goat hair vests, thigh-high boots, and glittering tuxedos. Sizing is sometimes approximate: “fits like a small.” There are no returns or exchanges. Matriarch Kris Jenner announced the business this week on Instagram—racking up more than 47,000 followers within days. The bulk of the inventory is Jenner’s, from minks to tracksuits. The balance is so lopsided that it feels like the daughters’ items are window-dressing on a momager’s spring cleaning. Many things were, in resale parlance, NWT (new with tags.)
Most celebrity closet purges are one-time events to benefit a charity. The Schitts Creek cast recently sold roughly 800 wardrobe pieces to benefit GLSEN, an educational non-profit working to end LGBTQ bullying in schools. A number of Real Housewives, The Bachelor hopefuls and other reality show cast members have sold via ThredUp for charity. Kardashian West, among other family members, has previously sold clothes to benefit charity.
But Kardashian Kloset is described as “our newest business”—and there’s no charity listed. With six women ranging from Kris, 63, to Kylie, 22, there’s a real possibility they could generate enough inventory to make it a viable business—particularly if they also sell gifted freebies, unsold extras from lines they design, and outgrown kids wear from Jenner’s ten grandchildren.
“There’s massive opportunity here,” said Linda Knight, chief creative officer of Phenomenon, an advertising and branding agency. “They are simply tapping into what brands like The Real Real, Vestiaire Collective, and Poshmark already know—that people want luxury goods at a more affordable price, especially ones worn by their favorite reality stars.”
She added that it feels like a natural brand extension. “We already have an eye into their lives through KUWTK, we know nearly every facet of their lives, we can do our makeup just like them, and now we can actually wear what they’ve worn.” She didn’t anticipate designers getting miffed that some of their goods are being jettisoned. Instead, she believes it will show younger shoppers that authentic items hold value.
The site says that each item was “hand selected and is now available for the public to purchase exclusively here.” Behind the breezy launch, one imagines a flotilla of personal assistants pulling clothes out of acres of closets and engaging in Marie Kondo exercise. Does it bring you joy? Oh wait, did you even remember you owned it?
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