Ambre Dahan, the French-born, L.A.-based design director of Joe's Jeans (and wife of Joe's Jeans founder Joe Dahan), knows that the online resale space is competitive. And crowded. After all, 2012 was filled with launch-after-launch: The Real Real, Vaunte, Shop Hers, and Material Wrld, to name a few.
But Dahan believes that her self-funded site, Walk In My Closet, which launches today, is unique enough to make a real impression on the market. And she may be right.
"I think there's still a chance to create real social community around fashion," said Dahan when we spoke last week in her minimalist Los Angeles office. (The most prominent decor was a stack of shoe boxes, topped off with a Celine clutch, waiting to be shot by the in-house stylist and photo team.)
So she's setting out to do just that. Along with the requisite host of influencers offering access to their castoffs (including Jenni Kayne, Jacqui Getty, and Lulu Frost's Lisa Salzer), Walk In My Closet consists of several other elements. There's an online magazine, a mood board creator, a selection of items the editorial staff loves from full-priced retailers called "Shop the World," and a chance for users to create their very own "closets," where they can sell their own items, or simply put together a Clueless-style inventory of everything they own. (The closets can be private or public, and are no different from those of the featured influencers.) You can "follow" the other closets you like.
Other services include a concierge for those who would prefer that someone else manage the sale of their goods, as well as a forthcoming iPhone app.
It's a lot, and I won't be surprised if Dahan eliminates an element or two (or three) as the site evolves and she figures out what people actually want out of it. But despite its complexity, what I really like about Walk In My Closet from a user's perspective is that it's fun. Like playing dress-up, or paper dolls. The kind of site where you can get a little lost. The cool-factor is there, but at the same time it's quite inclusive. Everyone belongs, not just the rich people selling off another round of tweed jackets. Combine that with great design, and what you have is potential. Click over to Walkinmycloset.com to create an account and play around. Let us know what you think.