Jo Spolton, CEO and Founder of Rumage, chats to Jenny Barrett, Founder of SuperLooper.
SuperLooper is a service for parents to keep hardly worn, outgrown baby clothes in the loop by donating them to their library and/or renting them to keep them in use for as long as possible. Super Looper are a self-funded, not-for-profit, driven solely by their desire to help people to take action and change the way they consume. Their rental customers are people who want to be smart and sustainable when it comes to dressing their babies well. Jo talked to Jenny about how its been going….
HOw long has SuperLooper been going and has it changed since you started?
SuperLooper was launched in Oct 2020 and has gone through several iterations since then as we test our model and develop our ideas and tech. Because baby clothing rental is still a relatively new idea there have been things that we could only learn by experience. Good customer service has always been at the heart of all we do. I feel we’ve scored well there, but our tech hasn’t been great so it’s been difficult to deliver a good customer experience. However, we’re about to partner with SuperCycle who are developing a fantastic rental platform. And Ethical Hour are going to help us with our marketing, sales and PR, so the future looks bright for SuperLooper and our community!
What was the lightbulb moment that made you start?
I loved the notion of renting baby clothes that are only worn a few times. Keeping them for just as long as you need, then returning them. Then the lightbulb moment came when I learned that there are 183 million items of outgrown baby clothes stored away and redundant in UK homes! That’s just the UK, think how many there must be world wide? We want to help get those hardly worn items back out there in use. To reduce waste and reduce the need to produce more and more, especially cheap, garments.
What motivates your mojo on a rainy day?
There have been many rainy days. But the thing that keeps me going is a phrase I heard in some lyrics by Beyoncé that said ‘nothing real can be threatened’.
So in all the times when I was thinking ‘who are you Jenny to think you can do this?’ or ‘this is impossible, are you crazy Jenny?’ Or when I listened to people who said it was ‘a nice idea but could never work in reality’ I thought of this. SuperLooper might not be perfect, and certainly not there yet, but our intentions are pure. I believe in the ultimate goal of helping to change the way people shop and regard their clothes. So according to this saying, the idea can never be threatened!
How do you see the future of consumption?
I think that what we need to get back to is valuing what we have more. Being more conscious and knowledgeable about where things come from and how they’re made. Understanding that nothing is forever, so we have to protect and find ways of getting the most out of things we have. Over the last 50 years or so especially, we have been ‘trained’ to see things as being easily discardable. So, this means we don’t value items in the way we used to or should do. Because we can always get a new something so easily! So the future has to be circular or as near as we can get it to be. Then we get the very best use out of what we consume and we cut our consumption drastically. Waste not want not!
If you could change the world with one thing, what would it be?
We have to wake up to the fact that we have been over consuming for many years. This is not only totally unnecessary but that it’s totally unsustainable for our planet. Many resources ARE finite so we’ll face that before too long. But why wait till then? It’s up to us to build better consumption and production habits for the safety of the planet and our children. We can all play a part, and it’s really not that difficult. We just have to wake up to a new (well old actually) way of doing things. Sharing what we have more! CHOOSE TO REUSE!
Images supplied by SuperLooper