The RealReal bucked the Covid-19 pandemic retail trend of closing stores and instead has opened a new location in Brooklyn to kick off 2021, with plans to open nine more this year.
Opened Tuesday, the new store in Cobble Hill at 163 Court Street packs two luxury consignment offices, and areas for women’s and men’s fashion and accessories, fine jewelry and watches, and home and art, into 2,500 square feet.
The luxury resale firm brings Cobble Hill’s art scene into the store through a hand-painted tile mural by Brooklyn designer and artist Cassie Griffin. Sustainable materials, such as cork flooring and plywood cabinetry feature throughout the store, while moveable walls for the luxury consignment offices allow flexible layout changes, without needing additional materials.
“Stores boost our penetration in a market and drive supply, so brick and mortar is an important part of our strategic growth plan. We’ll be opening up to 10 new stores in the coming quarters, kicking off with Brooklyn as our first new store of the year,” Courtney Hawkins, vice president of retail, said. “Stores help us bring our brand to life, introducing new customers with an immersive experience and giving existing customers a physical touchpoint. They’re also a local neighborhood spot to shop, meet with our experts and drop off consignment.”
Hawkins said an advantage of going into a market is that it knows what neighborhoods are central for its buyers and consignors. “Cobble Hill is an ideal location because it’s convenient for our existing base, and it’s a prime shopping and dining destination with great foot traffic to help increase our exposure to the local community,” she added.
Visitors to the new location can take advantage of The RealReal’s range of expert services, from complimentary valuations to in-person consignment appointments and curbside drop-off, as well as other services such as cleaning, repairs and bespoke alterations. The Bay Area-based firm also enables same-day retrieval of online orders either at curbside or in stores.
All items in the store, including furniture and decor are available for sale, and the company’s online items can be virtually shopped in-store. In addition to the Cassie Griffin mural, the reflection of the local community can be seen in the curation of art, furniture and decor through one-of-a-kind pieces, such as art and ceramics. The Cobble Hill store includes The RealReal’s first dedicated vintage section, a category that is currently trending in women’s. While The RealReal says its resale best sellers in women’s fashion include Prada and Chanel, the most sought-after brands currently include Isabel Marant, Marni, Acne Studios and Chloé.
“We see stronger demand for casual and bohemian styles from our Millennial and Gen-Z shoppers in Brooklyn, so for the first time we’ll be featuring a dedicated vintage section in our store that includes both vintage and vintage-inspired clothing and handbags from designers like Gucci, Chanel, Christian Dior, Akris, Issey Miyake, and Missoni,” said Sasha Skoda, head of women’s.
In men’s, designer outerwear, knitwear and streetwear are hot trends. Best sellers include Gucci and Louis Vuitton, and the most-wanted encompass items from Thom Browne, Rick Owens, Maison Margiela and Dior Homme. “Streetwear is in high demand among our Brooklyn shoppers, so we’re leaning into ‘Gorpcore,’ modern streetwear for the outdoors. We’ll be showcasing a mix of jackets (puffers, bombers, anoraks), hoodies, cargo pants, utility vests and more, from popular designers including Supreme, Balenciaga, The North Face, Patagonia and Moncler,” said Mayank Hajela, head of men’s.
In fine jewelry and watches, trending categories are unbranded diamonds and minimalist gold jewelry. Also sought after are accessible pieces from Anita Ko, Maria Tash and Louis Vuitton, while the most wanted brands are Rolex, Cartier watches, Tiffany & co. and Cartier jewelry. In home and art, vintage one-of-a-kind ceramics is the top trending category. The most wanted items are from iconic artists such as John Baldassari, Ellsworth kelly, Bruce Nauman and from emerging artists, like Rebecca Rich.