Depop, the online vintage clothing site that’s like a trendy eBay for hipsters, held a three-day pop-up market at Bohemia Place Market in Hackney, where buyers and sellers could actually meet in person. Luminita Roman investigates… PHOTOS AND VIDEO BY LUMINITA ROMAN
Fifty specially handpicked Depop sellers met for the first time on the weekend of 25-27 May, hoping to make a profit off people interested in purchasing their clothes, sunglasses, jewellery, shoes and other items.
A buyer at Depop Market, Bohemia Place
“Depop is open to anyone. It’s a place for people to express their creativity and make some money while they’re at it. It’s social,” said Oskar Platts Palmer, Senior Community Development Coordinator at Depop.
“Depop is a platform that connects like-minded creatives from all over the world and a place to find unique, trend-setting items that people want to wear.”
Not only that, it encourages consumer to rewear old clothing, instead of throwing it in the bin, which helps to make our planet greener.
Vintage comes to Hackney
As an online vintage destination, Depop has accumulated a network of 13 million users in eight years.
And vintage is still going strong, with the idea of buying vintage or secondhand clothes fast becoming a trend.
For many young people buying vintage/secondhand clothing, it’s a passion but also is money-saving. Bargain prices and unique items attract buyers.
Bohemia Place Market was full of colours, good vibes, live music and people searching for bargains, all creating a bohemian and nostalgic atmosphere.Download Video
Bohemia Place Market
Sienna Taylor, 20, design student from Edinburgh, was trying on some vintage t-shirts. “Most of my clothes are secondhand. It’s the only way I can afford to wear designers,” she said.
“Over 80% of my clothes are secondhand,” said Olga Popovic, 26, a Depop buyer, who was also interested in purchasing cheap t-shirts.
But the Depop event wasn’t only about buying new items. “We want to give our sellers an opportunity to express their creativity IRL, meet some new customers and each other, and gain some valuable retail experience at the same time,” Platts Palmer said.
“This event is unique because our community is unique. They are all selling a range of different items that represent their style and personalities, and a lot of pieces you can’t find anywhere else.”
For many, the greener aspect of recycled clothing is more important than bargain prices or fashion. The reality is the fashion industry is contributing to climate change and leaving a pollution footprint.
The materials used to make clothing can also be highly polluting. Fashion’s use of fossil fuels generates carbon dioxide that contributes to global warming by trapping heat in the atmosphere.
According to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, textile production produces 1.2 billion tonnes of greenhouse gas every year, and its production has approximately doubled in the last 15 years.
“As wearers, we can also make a difference by choosing and looking after our clothes more carefully, wearing them longer, having smaller wardrobes, re-cycling the clothes we no longer want and thinking about alternatives to buying such as swapping or renting outfits,” according to the V & A website.
Recycle what you wear
The annual impact of a household’s newly bought clothing, alongside the washing and cleaning of its garments huge, according to a report by WRAP. It estimates it is the equivalent of:
- “carbon emissions from driving an average modern car for 6,000 miles
- “water needed to fill over 1,000 bathtubs
- “weight of over 100 pairs of jeans”
Every time we extend the life of an article of clothing by just nine months, we “reduce carbon, water, and waste footprints by around 20–30% each”, the WRAP reports estimates.
“If clothes go out with the rubbish, they’ll end up in landfill, so we’ve teamed up with Oxfam to help Britons become more charitable and environmentally saving this spring,” said Paul Crewe, head of sustainability at Sainsbury’s, told The Guardian.
Landfill: yes or no
Even today, the journey of a piece of clothing does not always end at landfill. A percentage of clothing purchases are recycled mainly in three ways: clothing may be resold at a lower price, it may be exported in bulk for sale in developing countries, or it may be considered for recycling into raw material for the manufacture of other apparel and non-apparel products.
The Depop event encourages consumers to cut their carbon footprint and change the way they shop.
Old but Gold Vintage, based in Bristol with worldwide shipping, is one of the sellers from the Depop London market who supply vintage from around the world.
“We sell vintage, unique items from designers. We sell clothes that some people don’t want anymore. By selling second-hand clothes, it’s a means to join a more environmentally-friendly way of life. It is a remake to stop destroying,” Amy Chapman, 22, assistant manager at Old but Gold Vintage.
The prices of items from Old but Gold Vintage at Depop Market vary between £15 a t-shirt and £150 a Burberry coat.
Whether customers were looking for some new fashion swag or wanted to browse in person and learn more about the Depop, a visit was well worth it. Look out for more Depop events in the near future.
Admission is free with great music from NTS, who will be broadcasting on site all day and vegan-friendly food and drink to keep you going while you shop.
- If you are interested in selling items on Depop, download the app, choose your username and profile photo, list your items and create your PayPal account. Listing of items is free, but a 10% fee will be charged when you sell an item (including shipping costs).
WRAP helps consumers:
- “reduce the impact of clothing sold to them
- “extend the useful life of their clothes
- “increase supply and demand for pre-owned, re-usable clothing
- “reduce laundry impacts
- “keep clothes out of landfill”
Bohemia Place Market – Location