Rent the Runway, a fashion rental service which provides its subscribers freedom from stuffing their closets while still enjoying a rotating cast of high-end designer clothing for a fraction of the retail price, is now working with a group of private designers to create new collections that will cater directly to its existing shoppers by using their own shopping habits and tastes.
The organization announced a new program it will use to produce exclusive collections for the site it calls the “Designer Collective.” The Collective will be given data gathered from shoppers who use the Rent the Runway platform to inform design choices and create collections that will eventually be sold back to the same individuals that inspired them.
“We’ve always believed in the talent of designers so we’re partnering further with the brands using our data to create exclusive inventory for the [Rent the Runway] subscriber,” the organization said in a statement emailed to Sourcing Journal.
The “Designer Collective” will create their exclusive collections by utilizing “millions of data points” collected by studying the shopping habits of actual subscribers who have purchased products on the site. Those data points will then be used to create a picture of what the average Rent the Runway consumer most wants to see out of a collection. Data will be drawn from a variety of categories, including a user’s wear rate, their fit preferences and even the places they end up taking their clothing.
Rent the Runway says its data is so accurate that it can determine fit preferences based on individual styles and sizes and can even determine the most in-demand hemlines and sleeve lengths. Geographic regions are also being taken into account, with specific data on apparel demand by region available to the “Collective,” too.
To begin with, Rent the Runway will offer 10 to 15 styles per designer for its exclusive offering. It expects to update and expand those initial collections each quarter or twice a year depending on the individual designer.
The launch collection will feature designs from Derek Lam, Prabal Gurung and Jason Wu. Rent the Runway is currently in talks with other designers to add to the collective in the future.
Rent the Runway is also working to expand its appeal and its subscriber base by offering more convenience for shoppers. In October, the organization invested in 15 WeWork locations in major city centers that give local subscribers the convenience of a dedicated drop-off point, raising the limit on the number of garments that an individual can simultaneously check out at the same time.