Sustainable Fashion


Revolutionizing Resale: Wilson Griffin on Recurate’s Sustainable Fashion Mission

In this episode of Talk Commerce, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Wilson Griffin, CEO and founder of Recurate. Wilson shared his insights on the resale market, sustainable fashion, and how Recurate empowers brands to embrace circularity.

The Environmental Impact of Fashion

Wilson highlighted the massive environmental footprint of the apparel supply chain, particularly in the fashion industry. He emphasized the duty of brands and enablers like Recurate to optimize manufactured product use.

“The apparel supply chain fashion in particular, but this is true of other industries as well, is it has a massive, massive environmental footprint. Just the amount of raw materials and resources that go into manufacturing the products that we buy.”

We can significantly reduce the industry’s environmental impact by extending product life cycles and reducing dependence on manufacturing new items.

Bringing Brands into the Resale Economy

Historically, brands have been excluded from the resale economy, with platforms like eBay and Poshmark facilitating secondhand sales without brand involvement. Recurate aims to change that by helping brands manage their own resale programs.

“What we’ve set out to do is help those brands to participate in this. So all of a sudden brands are incentivized to make higher quality goods that will last longer because they’re actually going to benefit from the second, third and fourth sales.”

By connecting brands with the resale market, Recurate enables them to benefit from multiple product life cycles, incentivizing the production of higher quality, longer-lasting goods.

Resale OS 2.0: Streamlining the Resale Process

Wilson introduced Recurate’s latest offering, Resale OS 2.0, which provides modular solutions for brands to integrate resale into their existing e-commerce ecosystem. With features like seller influencer closets and the ability to quickly launch resale programs, Recurate is making it easier than ever for brands to embrace circularity.

“The way that we, uh, work with brands is we’ve we fully integrate into their sort of e-commerce ecosystem tech stack. Uh, what that means is that we have access to a lot of that brand’s information as far as, you know, customer purchase history, the brand’s catalog.”

This integration allows brands to leverage customer data and product information to optimize their resale offerings and meet customer demand.

The Future of Sustainable Fashion

As we move into 2024 and beyond, Wilson sees a significant opportunity for brands to invest in sustainable practices and embrace the resale market. By offering secondhand products alongside new items, brands can grow their revenue without increasing their environmental footprint.

“There really is no incremental water usage or greenhouse gas emissions to sell a product a second time. All of that environmental impact went into the first sale of that product.”

Brands prioritizing sustainability, transparency, and innovation in their supply chains will be well-positioned to thrive in the growing resale economy.

As a fervent advocate for sustainability, I believe that the work Recurate does is crucial in transforming the fashion industry. By empowering brands to embrace resale and circularity, we can significantly reduce the environmental impact of the apparel supply chain while still meeting consumer demand.

I encourage listeners to check out Recurate’s website and reach out if you’re a brand interested in launching a resale program. As consumers, we can also support brands that offer resale options and prioritize sustainability.

To hear more of Wilson’s insights and the full conversation, be sure to listen to the complete Talk Commerce podcast episode. Let’s work together to revolutionize the fashion industry and create a more sustainable future.

Talk-Commerce-Michael Mader

Making a Difference with Socks: My Conversation with Michael Mader of Hippy Feet

As a podcast host, I have the privilege of meeting and interviewing some truly inspiring individuals. One such person is Michael Mader, the founder and CEO of Hippy Feet, a sock and apparel company with a mission to end youth homelessness. In this blog post, I’ll share some of the key insights from our conversation.

Meeting Michael Mader

Michael is not just the CEO of Hippy Feet; he’s also the heart and soul of the company. His day-to-day role involves everything from sales and revenue-driving efforts to product design, marketing, and managing collaborations and brand relationships. He’s a man of many hats, but what truly sets him apart is his passion for helping the homeless community.

The Birth of Hippy Feet

Hippy Feet is a six-and-a-half-year-old company that was born out of adversity. Michael suffered a traumatic brain injury during his senior year of college, forcing him to drop out and go into recovery for three months. During this challenging time, he realized the importance of having a support system and was inspired to create a business that could serve as a support system for young people affected by homelessness.

The Evolution of Hippy Feet’s Mission

Initially, Hippy Feet hired young people for job training programs, providing them with income and teaching them soft skills. However, Michael soon realized that while this approach was successful in providing income, it didn’t address the core social services needed to transition out of homelessness, such as housing and healthcare. Recognizing their limitations as a for-profit company, they decided to shift to a donation model. Now, they donate 50% of their profits to nonprofits addressing youth homelessness. Last year alone, they donated $66,000, which was more than they had previously paid in wages. This shift allowed them to focus on revenue-driving activities and improve the efficiency of their business.

Partnering with Nonprofits

Hippy Feet carefully selects nonprofit partners and strategic locations for their donations. They prioritize nonprofits that provide housing, healthcare, and employment services. While they have nonprofit partners in Minneapolis and St. Paul, they also strategically give to other states with high homeless youth populations, such as California and Illinois.

The B2B Program

Hippy Feet’s B2B program allows companies to customize socks with their logos or artwork. These companies support Hippy Feet’s mission and share their commitment with their clients and employees. Despite the availability of cheaper socks from China, they choose to buy from Hippy Feet because of their mission, the fact that their socks are made in the USA, and their use of sustainable materials like recycled cotton.

Sustainability at Hippy Feet

Sustainability is a core value at Hippy Feet. All their socks are made in the USA, partnering with family-owned businesses in North Carolina. They use recycled yarns, merino wool, soy-based fibers, and recycled cotton yarns in their products. Each pair of socks contains about 85% recycled materials.

The Future of Hippy Feet

Looking ahead, Michael sees growth potential for Hippy Feet in the retail, B2B, and e-commerce spaces. He’s excited about an upcoming collaboration with former Bachelorette Michelle Young. They have partnered to create a collection of socks designed by K-12 students, with the proceeds going toward supporting youth experiencing homelessness. The collaboration will be announced in the next few weeks and the socks will be available for sale in May, coinciding with National Teacher Appreciation Week.

Wrapping Up

My conversation with Michael was not just enlightening, but also inspiring. His commitment to helping the homeless community and his innovative approach to running a business is truly commendable. I look forward to seeing what the future holds for Hippy Feet.

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