John Lewis launches new rental service for children’s clothes today – from £18 a month

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Supermarkets and retailers are doing what they can to help customers with the cost-of-living crisis, including John Lewis. The retail giant’s environmentally aware rental scheme will enable shoppers to rent seven items at a time, which can later be swapped for a new design or bigger size.

John Lewis’ subscription service will offer parents the opportunity to rent children’s clothes from just £18 a month.

Six or seven items can be rented at a time and, when the children have grown out of them, returned to store for a new design or a bigger size.

The returned items will be cleaned so they can be rented again and again, making this scheme just as environmentally aware as it is financially viable.

Customers will know if the clothes they rent have been rented before as they will be put in three categories: brand spanking new, gently worn, or well-loved.

These categories will depend on how many times the garments will have previously been hired.

The rental fee for an item will take its condition into account too.

John Lewis has a series of monthly and quarterly subscription plans available from today, May 26, ranging from £18 a month or £50 a quarter for 100 credits, £27 a month or £75 a quarter for 150 credits, and £36 a month or £100 a quarter for 200 credits.

For example, a gingham dress which costs £19.45 would be available for 13 credits, and dinosaur-print joggers which retail for £9.50 could be rented for seven credits.

Other children’s clothes from the 51 items available to rent include a yellow hoodie, available to rent for 11 credits, a navy twill waistcoat for 14 credits, and a green rain mac for 20 credits.

The scheme, which is in collaboration with clothing rental business Thelittleloop, is the right step forward in a world of fast fashion and never-ending landfill.

According to environmental charity Hubbub, an estimated 183 million outgrown baby clothes currently sit forgotten in British wardrobes.

But John Lewis isn’t the only major British retailer to jump on the new rental trend.

Last year, Marks and Spencer partnered with online rental store Hirestreet to enable shoppers to rent outfits for four to 30 days from just £13.

And there are plenty more rental services like Hirestreet available online.

There is Hurr Collective for high-end clothes without damaging your bank account, Rotaro for bridalwear or other dresses for big occasions, Cocoon Club for vintage classics, and Baukjen for sustainable basics.

The latter allows customers to rent everything from dresses to jackets for as little as £13 for two weeks.

According to the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), Britons throw away a whopping £140million worth of wearable clothes every year.

Meanwhile, demand for raw materials is expected to triple by 2050, with the textile industry understood to be the second-largest global polluter, responsible for 92 million tonnes of waste annually.

Fashion rental may be the best way forward.

Glynis Williams, in charge of baby and children’s clothing at John Lewis, commented on the retailer’s new scheme. She said: “We’re thrilled to be launching a collection of baby and childrenswear clothing with Thelittleloop, giving customers a more sustainable option to rent high-quality John Lewis clothing through a trusted partnership.”

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