Interview with Raúl González (Ecodicta)
"You don't need so many clothes to dress well, you just have to plan the wardrobe logically"
It is often said that sharing is living. And, thanks to initiatives like Ecodicta, sharing also means giving life to the planet and... to the closet!
Ecodicta is the reference for fashion sharing in Spain. It is a platform where, through a monthly subscription, it is possible to receive different garments every month. You receive the clothes, test and use them and, after that, the garments are replaced with others every 30 days. An unlimited and sustainable wardrobe!
In a new edition of the #logictalks, we talked to Raúl González, CEO of Ecodicta, who tells us more about this initiative.
How Ecodicta started?
Some time ago, my wife and I were expatriates in Mexico. That made us buy a lot of clothes that we knew we were not going to bring back home. Thinking about this, we started researching fashion sharing and saw that it was a model that worked very well in the United States, but more focused on parties and celebrations. We realized that in Spain there was nothing similar and we adapted the model.
How does the platform work?
At first, the client fills out a style test of 30 to 40 questions. Then she chooses a type of box with the number of garments that best suits her needs. After that, our stylists choose that first box as a surprise and send it to her. In this way, we start surprising the client and showing her some looks she didn't know before.
From then on, every month the stylists send between 10 and 15 personalized proposals and the client chooses the clothes she is interested in.
So Ecodicta is also a way of discovering trends.
Yes, and that leads us to work with brands. We don't understand brands as just suppliers, but we try to impact them in three areas: Corporate Social Responsibility for bigger brands, sales, and marketing.
With smaller brands, we are creating an ecosystem around us to promote them at different events. For example, we held a sustainable fashion show at COP25, where we invited 7 of our brands. In addition, we are also trying to accompany brands in their transition to sustainability. Because we understand that sustainability is not just about materials, but must involve the entire value chain, from product design to marketing. In the end, what we are fighting against is the "use and throw -away” concept.
How harmful is the conventional fashion industry to the planet?
It's hard to calculate. Sometimes they say it's the second or third most harmful industry... But it's complicated, a lot of the pollution from fashion is related to the oil industry. When it comes to transport, where do we include it, in fashion itself or in oil?
What we know is that it pollutes a lot. We plan to develop our environmental footprint study. And for the moment we are taking notice of the most qualitative responses from our clients, who tell us that they are stopping consuming this type of fast fashion.
Your approach is not so much a "try on all the clothes you want", but something more related to responsible consumption.
We have several customer profiles. When we started, there was very little awareness about fashion sharing. Now there is almost an article in the press about sustainable fashion every 2 or 3 days and the perceptions are changing.
We had a customer profile that wanted to be sustainable but couldn't find alternatives. And also people who wanted to discover clothes and renew their wardrobe continuously. In this case, we work on making people aware that it is not necessary to have so many clothes to dress well, you just have to plan your wardrobe in a logical way; with clothes that combine with each other, it is easy to generate "new" looks.
Ecodicta is a reference of fashion sharing in Spain, do you notice growth in this sector?
Yes, companies similar to ours are emerging... It is something that is moving. In Europe, England had the greatest presence, although now interesting things are coming out in France, Germany and Italy. In Spain we are moving forward little by little.
Do you think this concept of a more conscious fashion will eventually prevail?
According to the studies we have, fashion will have more plurality, it will go beyond the big stores: we have a big boom in second hand, sustainability... I think there will be 7 or 8 experiences in the wardrobes, among them fashion sharing, which is a small help to complete it.
It also influences that states are starting to legislate fashion. In the end the big companies have those prices because they are not paying the externalities related to what they are polluting. Just as in other industries those who do not comply with their emissions quotas are sanctioned, I think it is very likely that a small tax will be imposed on fast fashion.
What is the future of Ecodicta?
We want to consolidate fashion sharing in Spain. We have increased the team, we are now 6 people. And we are developing a new, more comfortable platform for our consumers. And, of course, we are still thinking about how to continue innovating.