LONDON — As the circular economy gains more relevance, the repairs market — estimated to be worth 100 billion pounds — is proving to be a vital link in the chain of sustainable consumption.
London-based luxury repairs service The Restory — which has built a name among insiders as a top destination for damaged handbags and shoes — has recognized the opportunity and expanded its business beyond leather goods to the clothing category with services that include cleaning, maintenance repairs, replacements, as well as bespoke tailoring.
Now, it has begun forging relationships with specific brands — starting with Manolo Blahnik.
“Circular fashion can’t happen without aftercare,” said Vanessa Jacobs, The Restory’s founder and chief executive officer. “We are already more than three times larger than we were this time last year and our business development pipeline is stronger than it’s ever been. We are laying the foundations for global scale in everything from operations to technology, internationalization, technical solutions and more.”
She noted that providing services for a brand — proactively at scale, not reluctantly and on occasion — is an entirely different way of doing business to traditional linear models.
“But we’ve now made our solutions available for brands to use in a way that suits their current objectives, situation and territory. Brands can now fully embrace the aftercare opportunity. They can retain control over the customer experience, gather data and reap the benefits of sustainability, loyalty and engagement.”
As part of its partnership with Manolo Blahnik, customers will now be able to access post-purchase repair services — everything from re-soleing to re-heeling, restoration and dyeing — directly through the Manolo website.
It was a no-brainer as far as Jacobs was concerned, given the timeless aesthetic of the brand’s shoes — and people’s desire to take care of them and keep them for as long as possible.
“In our view, acquiring a pair of Manolos is an investment in a timeless piece. We have always helped our clients and community with aftercare as it’s a vital step in looking after treasured pieces in your wardrobe,” said Kristina Blahnik, chief executive officer at Manolo Blahnik.
“Our partnership with The Restory takes that a step further and gives our community a solid, clear guide to aftercare with a renowned company that have ateliers and craftsmen akin to our own skilled employees in our shoe ateliers and factories. I am incredibly passionate about this project as it will also help to encourage clients to renew and refresh their much-loved Manolos and help with one of our shared house goals that of responsible ownership,” she added.