airCloset, Japan’s largest fashion rental company, recently launched shareCloset, a project to solve the issue of apparel disposal. It collects clothing no longer worn by customers, and reuses them by either sharing them or recycling them based on their condition.

Clothes that can be used again are shared by utilising the inspection and cleaning techniques cultivated by the rental business airCloset. Items in bad condition can be used as recycled resources, in collaboration with the activities of BRING, the Japan environment plan for handling collection and recycling of fibre products.

Apparel makers were solicited to participate in the project, and FLANDRE CO., LTD. made efforts as the first partner company. On December 14-31, six stores of the company’s brands, including INED, ef-de, and 7-IDconcept, collected clothing items from customers.

If customers bring items from the target brands of FLANDRE to the stores, they receive one coupon worth 1,080 yen for each item of clothing. The coupons are aimed to be used to buy new products, so one can be used for each 5,000 yen of the retail price at the targeted six stores.

The items in good condition among those collected are inspected, cleaned, and repaired, and then lent to customers at the fashion rental company airCloset. It is assumed they can be sold second-hand, but the person in charge stated, “We are considering how sharing should specifically be done. We want to see the condition and think.”

Satoshi Amanuma, President and CEO of airCloset, stated, “I want to create a system toward resolving the issue of apparel disposal, which the world is crying out for. I will confirm the reaction of customers and the operations, and want to develop this to be a major initiative.”