Founders: Louise Weiss & Samantha Valentine, 2020
Business: UK’s first fully circular peer-to-peer marketplace where parents can buy, sell, donate and recycle outgrown children’s clothing
dotte is the UK’s first fully circular peer-to-peer marketplace where parents can buy, sell, donate and recycle outgrown children’s clothing. More than a marketplace, we are a movement of parents supporting each other to live a more sustainable family life.
dotte was launched in June 2020 out of genuine parental frustration at the lack of circular options available for this life stage. Like most, Co-founders Louise and Samantha had been aware of fast fashion and it’s environmental impact for some time. But after having children they were both overwhelmed by how quickly their kids were growing out of clothes but also how few truly accessible options there were for selling them on. Shopping secondhand for their kids just didn’t work. Too much time. Too much effort. Not enough choice.
dotte was born in the midst of the first lockdown as a remedy to the fastest area of fashion – the UK’s only fully circular marketplace dedicated to childrenswear. Fast forward one year, and they have grown into a progressive, fashion-conscious community with thousands of like-minded parents. They’ve had press in British Vogue, The Guardian, The Observer, The Sunday Times Style Magazine and the Business of Fashion to name but a few – and were highlighted by TechRound in our Top 26 Fashion Startups! But even more impressively, just from buying and selling secondhand kidswear, their community has saved the planet enough C02 to fly a plane from London to Perth (and back!) and enough water to fill 2 Olympic sized swimming pools!
They believe the whole lifecycle of clothing, from production to buying, wearing to recycling, should be a source of happiness and care – and this ethos touches every area of the business. In July 2021, they launched their resale collective, working with retail and kidswear brands (11 signed up to date) who are committed to creating sustainably made clothes, designed to last. By teaming up, dotte and their resale collective partners are not only able to help extend the lifespan of children’s clothing and close the loop, but are also able to reward the dotte community further for slowing down fast fashion by investing in more sustainably made clothing in the first place.
Their plans for next year include the expansion of their community-led consignment service (enabling top dotters to list and sell items on behalf of parents who simply can’t find the time to do it themselves) and the announcement of exciting new brand partners, adding further impetus to their resale movement.
dotte raised £265k in Q1 and are currently raising our second round, which will allow them to grow our community further. Co-founder Louise shares, “The way our community has been embracing and advocating resale has really blown us away. So much of our growth has come from parents who care passionately about the circular economy. Furthermore, the excitement we’ve had from investors signals that the tide is really turning; resale culture is changing retail for the better, and we’re so excited to be part of it.”
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