Reducing the Environmental Impact of Fast Fashion
Research, user flow, sketching, visual design, and prototyping
Fashion cycles are moving faster than ever. The clothes that are mass-produced become more affordable, thus attracting consumers to buy more. The fashion industry is projected to be consuming a quarter of the world's carbon budget by 2050. Clothes must be designed differently, worn for longer and recycled as much as possible to reduce the amount of carbon used by the fashion industry.
Swap up is a new app that is tackling the issues of fast fashion. A lot of individuals never know what to do with their old clothes and end up throwing them away or donating them. Thrift stores often toss clothes that won’t sell. The idea of a “clothing swap” inspired a concept for this app which would allow individuals to swap clothing items of equal value.We as the “middle-women,” repurpose items that aren’t considered “gently used” (i.e. revamping clothing items that thrift stores would usually throw out to a landfill). The way the app works is that you can either place your items in a bag with your account information at a local drop box, at college campuses or apartment complexes, or mail them directly to our headquarters. Then our experts access the value of your clothing and post your “swap points” into your account. This way you can swap for items that are worth the same amount of swap points you have put in. If the clothing needs a little TLC, our designers will re-purpose these items and post on the app. Whenever you see an item in the app that you want, you can select it, pay a swap fee and get it shipped directly to your door!
BRAND IDENTITY DEVELOPMENT
We want Swap Up to be recognized for its efforts to try to reduce the environmental impact the fashion industry has as well as being responsible and aware of how clothing consumption affects others. For example, it is well known that many fast fashion products are produced overseas by people who make significantly less in comparison to what the article of clothing costs. And when we chose to convey this was through our logo. We created a simplistic logo that attempted to convey what we did. So the simplicity of the logo represents the simplicity of our application. And we also did a whimsical sewing machine to show that we re-designed the clothing in a new creative way. And we also tried to convey the collaborative effort of Swap Up in its company name The name Hannally is a combination of both the founder's names to suggest that consumers collaborate with one another.
User and Audience
The clothes that are mass-produced also become more affordable, thus attracting consumers to buy more. The cheap, trendy clothes produced by fast fashion is extremely appealing to college students who cannot afford clothes produced otherwise. However based on the outcome of our survey, we have identified our target audience as being 22-28 females. Although college-age students purchase fast fashion, an older demographic has more buying power than college students and is more likely to participate in a re-crafting service
MARKET RESEARCH ANALYSIS
External Primary Data
In order to understand college students’ shopping and closet cleaning habits, we created a survey and sent it out to our peers who then sent it among theirs as well. We asked questions about how long they tend to keep items, how often they shop for new items, and what they do with their “old” clothing items. We found that most females at NCSU purchase new clothing items once a month or every other month. When they shop for new clothes, the majority of participants purchase 1-3 items. We also asked how long they keep items purchased from famous fast-fashion retailers such as Forever 21, H&M, and Fashion Nova. Approximately 38% kept these items for 1-2 years, and approximately 31% only kept these items for 1-2 months! We decided to leave an open ended response for how the participants typically dispose or reuse clothing items. Most of the responses chose to donate or throw away their old clothes. The survey followed that question by asking if the participants have ever heard of or participated in a clothing swap. Approximately 69% of respondents said they have heard of this idea, but out of the 69%, only 19% had actually participated in a clothing swap. Our product could make the idea of the clothing swap more user-friendly and attainable, especially for those in our demographic. We believe the current issue is that there isn’t an easy way for individuals to meet up with others who might share their same style, and some might not want to meet up with others at all.
What Makes Swap Up Different?
We decided rather than to do a traditional clothing swap where people have to go in-person we decided to do an online clothing swap since a lot of businesses can be facilitated through an online platform and in addition to being the middleman for this platform we decided that we would also take the clothing and refurbished them so the products can have a new fresh look.
We aim to decrease the environmental impact of fast fashion and bridge the gap between consumer and industry processes. Swap up is passionate about our sustainability-focused product that places an emphasis on quality of product. We aim for transparency with our users while providing a simple process holding them accountable for putting an end to fast fashion. Our mission is to allow for consumers to easily swap clothing and understand their environmental impact.