This Black Friday, Patagonia exchanges new clothing for old and invests in the sharing economy

yerdle photo
© Yerdle

Several Black Friday's ago, eco-clothing giant Patagonia sent out a pretty subversive message: "Don't Buy Our Jackets!". Now they are taking this commitment to another level with a series of live events encouraging the exchange of gently loved goods.

The idea behind the original message was that we are too focused on buying what's new, what's trendy, rather than truly investing in clothing or other consumer items that can last and/or live on once we no longer have a use for them.At the time, some commentators were skeptical, suggesting this was little more than an attempt to get publicity. But Patagonia has already shown itself more committed to product longevity than most manufacturers, helping consumers by repairing products when they break and recycling them when they are done—and also encouraging us all to play our part by avoiding unnecessary purchases.

Now they are taking that commitment to a new level, investing money in Yerdle—a "sharing economy" start up which allows users to earn credits for giving away stuff they no longer want, credits which can be used to "buy" items that they do have a use for.

In an effort to raise awareness of this venture (and better facilitate the aforementioned commitment to clothing longevity!), Patagonia and Yerdle are holding a series of live Patagonia Worn Wear swap events at Patagonia retail locations across the country. Here's the idea:

And on Black Friday, we’re encouraging customers to take a break from the consumer madness and drop by one of our Patagonia Worn Wear Swap events. We’ve partnered with Yerdle to hold these all-day swaps in eight retail stores in major markets. Yerdle will run each event, allowing customers to bring in their used Patagonia clothing and swap it with something off the rack. If customers don’t find something they like, Yerdle will take the used clothing in exchange for Yerdle Credit. Patagonia will provide the food, music and refreshments. Pretty simple!

Yerdle is also launching a Patagonia #WornWear collection on Black Friday, featuring thousands of Patagonia items. Customers will be able to earn bonus “Yerdle Credits” for giving away their own Patagonia items on Yerdle, or for sharing stories on social media.

Events include:

• Boston (346 Newbury Street)
• Cardiff (2185 San Elijo Avenue)
• Chicago – Lincoln Park (1800 N. Clybourn Avenue)
• Denver (1431 15th Street)
• New York City – Bowery (313 Bowery)
• Portland (907 NW Irving Street)
• San Francisco (770 North Point)
• Santa Monica (1344 4th Street)

I have to say, as someone who sees a million green tinted marketing messages being touted each day, it's exciting to see Patagonia really delving into what a sustainable approach to retail and manufacturing might look like.

Good for them. And good for Yerdle for finding such a fantastic partner.

Oh, and here's a little video about shorts and stuff.

Tags: Collaborative Consumption | Consumerism | Less Is More | Patagonia Inc | Repair | Reusability

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