Last year, amid the flurry and consumer buzz of Black Friday, Patagonia unveiled its Worn Wear program. On a day when most consumers were at the malls piling through racks of winter gear, new toys and the latest electronic releases, the company was celebrating Black Friday in a different way: It was urging its customers to give away the Patagonia gear they didn't need.
Patagonia knows it's the kind of appeal that resonates with its customers. Sharing the value they've enjoyed, from that over-used jacket or favorite top, with others who can turn those memories into usable, re-loved gear makes sense. It also feels good. And, as the U.K.-based group WRAP points out, it's the kind of strategy that works for the environment.
This year, Patagonia is going a step further with its Worn Wear initiative. Today, in eight locations across the U.S., it's holding Worn Wear Swaps, where customers can swap their used gear for another item off the Worn Wear rack.
For those who can't make it to one of the designated locations, Patagonia has another option: It has joined forces with the sharing economy app Yerdle to make its Worn Wear program accessible to those in the remotest of mobile locations. Customers who don't find something they want in exchange for their pre-loved item can swap for Yerdle credits.
Patagonia's $20 Million and Change investment fund is backing up the partnership, which the company says is designed "to help innovative, like-minded companies bring about solutions to the environmental crisis and other positive change through business."
The eight Worn Wear Swap locations for today are:
Image credit: Patagonia
Jan Lee is a former news editor and award-winning editorial writer whose non-fiction and fiction have been published in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, the U.K. and Australia. Her articles and posts can be found on TriplePundit, JustMeans, and her blog, The Multicultural Jew, as well as other publications. She currently splits her residence between the city of Vancouver, British Columbia and the rural farmlands of Idaho.