New Zealand-based label Maggie Marilyn has shifted to an entirely direct-to-consumer (DTC) selling model and is reversing its inventory model to become more sustainable. 

The brand has "said goodbye" to its wholesalers, with customers only able to purchase from the brand's website and its first, newly-opened bricks and mortar store in New Zealand. 

Speaking on the decision, Maggie Marilyn founder Maggie Hewitt said that the brand is part of a mission to create a better fashion industry. 

"Our purpose is to use fashion to create a better world.

"Our mission is to help transition the fashion industry to one that is transparent, circular, regenerative and inclusive.

"Our vision is for a healthy planet, empowered people and an economy that puts these things first," she said. 

With this transition, the brand has also abandoned traditional fashion calendar rules, allowing it to design slowly and mindfully.  

A key part of the realignment is the move to reverse Maggie Marilyn’s inventory ratio from 80% seasonal collections / 20% ‘Somewhere’ (the brand's traceable, evergreen essentials line) — to 95% ‘Somewhere’ / 5% ‘Forever’ capsules (seasonal collections produced in limited runs.)

The primary reason for this inventory reversal is to provide the textile growers with enough confidence to invest in regenerative agriculture, backed by a guarantee that they'll receive a large enough portion of business from Maggie Marilyn. 

And according to the brand, the price accessibility and resulting growth of the ‘Somewhere’ range offers this scale.

Since ‘Somewhere’s’ 2019 launch Maggie Marilyn has seen a 140% revenue increase and 90% web traffic increase each quarter alongside a 95% increase in conversion rates year on year. 

And its shift to DTC will mean that the brand will be able to abandon markdowns, firming confidence with partners of its continued investment. 

"Moving forward Maggie Marilyn will never go on sale," the business said in a statement. 

"[We] strongly disagree with the pervasive and damaging discounting of quality goods based only on seasonality, stressing that clothing do not devalue over time or season to season.

"To date, markdowns have been dictated by wholesale partners, pushing [us] to follow suit as not to disadvantage customers buying directly from Maggie Marilyn - another obstacle alleviated in shifting to DTC," the business said. 

Furthering its mission, Maggie Marilyn is also set to launch a repairs scheme where customers can return pieces that have developed what the brand is calling 'love marks', to be repaired for free. 

Launching initially within New Zealand and Australia, Hewitt hopes to extend this to her global community next year.

Additionally, in 2021 the brand will be launching its collection program for the recycling of ‘Somewhere’ garments that have reached the end of their life. 

The brand has celebrated its new beginning with the opening of its first retail store, the first of many Hewitt hopes to open around the world. 

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