Jan 10, 2019 | By Sandy Chu
Aug 27, 2018
Depop has opened their first NYC shop, bringing their oft-described ‘ebay meets instagram’ selling platform IRL. In a retail landscape riddled with ‘apocalyptic’ talk and shuttering store fronts – this marks an important moment for the fashion industry – as we see a shift from online to offline operations quickly becoming a key retail directive. This so-called ‘re-commerce’ boom has taken the fashion world by storm, offering one of the biggest growth areas in the market right now. Brands like The Real Real, Thred Up and Poshmark join Depop in this movement, pushing the share economy values that we’ve seen saturate markets like transportation and housing, into our closets. Many of these online native and app-driven brands are also moving into the bricks and mortar space, reinforcing the idea that retail is going through a state of transformation, not an apocalypse. People are buying differently, but they are still buying. Depop alone has noted a 500% increase in traffic in the New York area over the last two years, according to Depop CEO Maria Raga, signaling a market ripe with opportunity for a physical space.
Their latest location at 168 Mott Street, straddles the trendy line between NoLita and Chinatown neighborhoods, opening just six months after their first physical location in Los Angeles. The store reflects the values of their social selling strategy, acting as a hub for sellers to hang out and browse the app, shop local collaboration collections or book an appointment to photograph their goods in an on-site photo studio. Workshops are planned for the future, broaching topics such as best shipping policies and proper photography. (Much of Depop’s community skews younger, so topics like navigating the Post Office and negotiating prices may be new topics for many.)
The in-store collaborations were chosen carefully for the space, all exhibiting a New York state of mind. Local designer Sandy Liang showcases her re-purposed wares made from vintage goods scored on the Depop app, while DJ and local personality Venus X curates her eclectic vintage finds scored from many travels around the globe. New York-themed T-shirts make up another vignette, ranging from vintage Yankees T-shirts to hand-painted pieces by Queens native, artist Slumpy Kev. The shop is well-lit with pops of cheery bright colors punctuating the small space. It feels approachable and fun, something you want to be a part of – which is exactly what the app asks of its community – get creative, get involved and make some money along the way.
Senior Retail Editor Sidney Morgan-Petro reports on retail trends for WGSN. You can follow her on her instagram @sidlouise.
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