John Lewis launches clothes renting platform for kids to help parents cut costs

Children grow so fast that it can be hard getting their wardrobe to keep up.

Babies actually outgrow around seven clothing sizes in just two years, meaning that a new outfit is useless after just a few wears. 

Parents end up with piles of hardly worn clothes, many of which end up joining the estimated 300,000 pieces of clothing that end up in UK landfills every week. 

Even if they aren’t thrown out, a whopping 183 million outgrown baby clothes are left and forgotten in British wardrobes, ​​according to environmental charity Hubbub. 

It’s painfully obvious that this is terrible for the environment, as each new tonne of clothing made creates 22 tonnes of greenhouse gases. 

Renting clothes could be the answer to this pressing problem. It’s a planet-friendly alternative to the fast fashion mentality of throwing clothes away after a few wears and buying more than you need simply to have something new. 

Borrowing clothes has become more common throughout the fashion industry, with people lending high-end garms to wear to a specific event before sending them back when you no longer need them. 

John Lewis is now joining the trend by offering parents the chance to swap clothes once their kids grow out of them. 

The new subscription service costs £18 a month, and lets parents rent children’s clothes until their little ones outgrow them. 

This solution isn’t just better for the environment, it’s cheaper – and helps with the frustration of buying your kids some clothes only for them to not fit soon after. 

The scheme allows parents to rent six or seven items at any one time that can then be swapped for a new design or a bigger size. 

The returned clothes are cleaned and any faults mended so they can be lent out again. 

The clothes are then categorised based on how much they’ve been lent out, given the label of ‘brand spanking new’, ‘gently worn’ or ‘well-loved’ based on how much they have previously been hired. 

You’ll pay less to rent an item that is ‘well-loved’  than one that is brand new, which is great when you’re watching the pennies. 

Spending £18 a month or £50 a quarter will give you 100 credits, bumping up to 150 credits for £27 a month or £75 a quarter and £36 a month or £100 a quarter for 200 credits.

You’ll get a fair amount each month for 100 credits: a  £19.45 gingham dress can be rented for 13 credits, while baby dino joggers retailing at £9.50 could be hired for 7 credits.

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