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June 29 2015

The Rise of Reformation

Reformation, our secret go-to shop for glamorous, gilt-free dresses is blowing up.

The Rise of Reformation

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Forget fast fashion. At Reformation, it’s act-fast fashion. 

The eco-friendly brand — a favorite among in-the-know girls — creates limited quantities of its covetable dresses, jumpsuits and crop tops, which sell out in the blink of an eye.

“It makes Reformation clothing exclusive,” explains founder Yael Aflalo of the brand’s quick turnaround. 

The company releases small batches of new styles every two to five weeks. How small? Aflalo told the New York Times that there are rarely more than 40 pieces per style and color.

This buy-it-now-or-sorry-sucker format was key to Aflalo, who wants shoppers to breeze into a party in a one-of-a-kind showstopper rather than wearing the same exact number as the next gal.

“When I see thousands of the same dress on a rack — it doesn’t matter how beautiful it is — I don’t want it,” says the 38-year-old.

The party dress, after all, is what Reformation’s cult status is built on. Want to turn heads at an upcoming wedding, date night, garden party or weekend rendezvous? The brand’s signature long, lean frocks — which channel that Michelle Pfeiffer in “Scarface” glamour with Rihanna’s swagger — will come to your rescue. 

Not only are Reformation’s clothes produced using sustainable fabrics and practices, they’re also affordably priced. Most frocks range from $88-$260, and T-shirts start at $28. (No wonder they sell out.)

So far, the formula is working. Aflalo reported $25 million in sales last year. And supermodel Karlie Kloss even signed on as an investor. She’s just one of Reformation’s many famous fans: Rihanna, Taylor Swift and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley are some of the celebrities who shop at the Los Angeles and New York boutiques.

With several new launches — a petite line, suiting collection and lower-price range — we’re guessing you’re going to have to hustle extra hard to snag one of the pieces.


But walking into your next party will be so worth it.

 

"In our business practices, we only use renewable energy in all of our offices," says Aflalo. "Our pencils and pens are even recycled. We have a drought resistant garden, and the water that feeds the garden comes from recycled water from inside the building. We don’t even have paper towels in the bathrooms."

"In our business practices, we only use renewable energy in all of our offices," says Aflalo. "Our pencils and pens are even recycled. We have a drought resistant garden, and the water that feeds the garden comes from recycled water from inside the building. We don’t even have paper towels in the bathrooms."

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How does your design process work? 

We have a pretty big team. We meet and talk about what we’re into.
We stay away from fantasy stuff and stuff that’s not very wearable. Because we have a really quick turnaround — we can make our clothes in two to five weeks — it means we just have to sit and think, “What do I want to wear in two weeks or next month?”

Why was it so important to be sustainable?

To me, being sustainable is an obvious choice. Why would anyone want to contribute to pollution? Being that type of person who was aware and shopped at Whole Foods, I realized that there weren’t any options for fashion. I’m drinking a green juice, but I’m walking around in a dress made from chemicals. I knew I had the experience and the passion to create a sustainable company that was also fashionable.

What makes the brand eco-friendly? 

We make our clothes three different ways. The first way is we buy vintage clothing, and we repurpose them. The second way is we buy extra fabric from designers. And the third way is from actual sustainable fabric that we’ve purchased. We go out, we’ll find the most sustainable fabrics available, and we’ll buy those. That’s actually how most of our clothes are made.

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