Last week our founder Lulu O'Connor was interviewed by Elle's Belle's Notebook to talk everything Clothes Doctor.
1. How did Clothes Doctor come about?
I started Clothes Doctor after my favourite coat ripped on the way to a really important meeting back when I was working in Finance in the City. The experience of trying to find a mending service in my local area that was convenient and high-quality was frustrating. When I began looking into the industry as a whole, I realised that it was outdated, and there wasn’t a service available that I could trust, especially for more specialist work that the dry cleaners just wouldn’t do.
I began to think that there had to be an alternative and wanted to build a platform that allowed people to look after their clothes, in a way that was convenient and easy to use, with high-quality work guaranteed. I also started to become more and more interested in the effect fast fashion was having on the planet, and realised the importance of caring for our clothes properly and finding solutions to help prevent garments from ending up in landfill. So I hoped Clothes Doctor would help consumers contribute to a more sustainable lifestyle.
2. How do the Clothes Doctor repairs and alterations services work?
We offer a range of clothing repair, alteration, and restoration treatments to customers across the UK via our digital platform.
Once we have received the order, our team of expert craftswomen will complete the work, keeping you updated at every step of the process. Your order will then be sent back to your preferred location, whether that be home, work, or a local pick-up point.
Our proprietary repair and alteration techniques cover everything from cashmere, wool, silk, suit fabric, through to more specialist leather or bespoke work. We can help bring your ideas to life and find solutions for every garment and fabric type.
3. What can people do to better preserve their clothes and avoid fast fashion?
There are a number of things that can be done to help increase the lifespan of a garment and save it from landfill. We have built a platform to educate our customers on the importance of proper clothing care. This is a big part of our mission to help you love your clothes for longer and to prevent garments from ending up in landfill.
We believe that investing in quality or choosing to buy second hand are the best ways to avoid fast fashion. You’ll also probably find yourself more committed to caring for an item you’ve invested in or a second-hand gem you’ve fallen in love with.
When it comes to wardrobe care, we recommend washing clothes less, and choosing a delicate hand wash over dry cleaning, which can cause damage to garments over time and negatively impact the environment. Mending clothes when you first notice damage is also a really important way of preserving an item’s condition.
6. Clothes Doctor have developed some wonderful clothing care products, are people washing their clothes incorrectly? If so, what is the best way to wash clothes to be eco-friendly and also maintain our clothing?
On the whole, there seems to be quite a lot of misinformation about clothing care out there. For example, it’s quite common to find that luxury items such as silk or cashmere are labelled as dry clean only. But this does not necessarily mean that this is the best way to care for the garment. We developed our Eco Washes as an alternative to dry cleaning, and we believe that these actually wash items better than dry cleaning, not to mention that it’s much more environmentally friendly. All of our products have been developed in-house using our experience of fabrics and garment care. So we try and communicate this knowledge as much as possible to our customers.
Washing at lower temperatures is another really simple way of keeping clothes looking their best. And to reduce the environmental impact of laundry. The key to this is using a high-performance wash such as our Signature or Sportswear products, which clean efficiently at low temperatures. Generally speaking, any kind of heat can damage clothes, whether that’s tumble drying or ironing, so dry naturally wherever possible. Steaming is another alternative method to washing our clothes and works wonderfully to refresh garments.
Want to find out more about Clothes Doctor? Click here to read the full interview.