Firstly, thank you for taking the time to read my story and check out my project!
I am an individual aiming to organise more regular swapping events (clothes, accessories, books, homeware etc). Members would, in time, be able to access a website to do online swapping. Profits would be reinvested back into the organisation.
The main image is me and some friends at a charity swish I organised in January, fundraising for Mind as I was due to run a half marathon prior to the Corona outbreak... still, everyone got something out of the swish, it was a fun get together and we all left with items we may never have discovered in the shops!
I live in London so I am aiming to progress from currently organising swaps in public places here to renting my own storage space which would help me plan the perfect swishing events with the opportunity for people to network, meet others and/ or have a guilt free "swapping not shopping experience". The space would be useful for storage for future swaps as well as organising items for online swappers.
I pledge to donate a proportion of surplus stock each month to a charity of my choice and will be keen to keep this varied to reflect the many causes I care about. The more people who are able to pay to attend swishes and grow the business by word of mouth, the more we can collaboratively give to those more in need, those living in hardship. This activity would be marketed on my Instagram and Facebook pages, and in time on a website.
Money raised through my Crowdfunder project would be used for the following purposes (list subject to extend depending what is best for the business to benefit its users):
- hire cost for event space
- Invest in a quality website
- public liability insurance for events
- transportation costs (in time, I would like to bring Swish with Laura further afield and venture outside of London!)
- Collaborate with other small business and non-profit, female-founded organisations
- I am also keen to organise swishes for hen parties, birthdays, baby showers and corporate events as a more sustainable way of getting people together over a drink or two and having a clothes swap
Those interested would have the option to subscribe to their choice of membership type with subscription starting at no charge to premium memberships offering a range of perks to further personalise the experience of swapping not shopping. My swishing events would be charged with a limited number of tickets per event to avoid crowding and keep the swap enjoyable for everybody. A loyalty scheme would be put in place to encourage repeat visits, along with a referral scheme which would be trialled to increase word of mouth custom.
Funds will be reinvested back into the project, as my aim for the project is to be a not for profit organisation.
Swaps were intended to be once a quarter in the London area, and any outside of London to be considered, but since the Covid-19 pandemic swaps will be virtual until further notice.
My main demographic is adults, mostly women from my experience of organising and attending swapping events, but of course not limited to women only. Families may well benefit from this service as it keeps costs low, encourages reuse and is basically another opportunity for hand me downs. Anybody keen to reduce waste in all areas of their life, but particularly fashion, those looking to both declutter and reduce their spending, those interested in green issues and keen to meet like minded people are all welcome to join my venture.
Photos of my handmade candles can be seen below, these will be one of the rewards I am giving to those who sponsor my project. Please note colours and designs are subject to change - any questions, please feel free to contact me on on my Instagram or Facebook page.