- Words By
- Clare Richardson
Clare Richardson is one of the most respected names in British fashion. A celebrated stylist and brand consultant, she has worked with powerhouse brands including Balenciaga, Hermès and Vogue. But that’s not all. As the founder of Reluxe, Clare is helping to reshape the contemporary fashion landscape.
Launched in 2022, Reluxe was born out of Clare’s passion to reform the way we shop, after having experienced the waste that the current fast-fashion cycle produces. A destination for beautiful-quality, pre-loved designer pieces from the likes of Valentino, Ganni and Isabel Marant, Reluxe is on a mission to create positive change by championing the circular ethos of buying secondhand and reselling clothes that are no longer worn.
Clare’s commitment to enjoying fashion as sustainably as possible is inspirational – and her own immaculate style is testament to the fact that dressing well needn’t cost the Earth. We spent a day at her London home to discover more about Reluxe and get her advice for shopping pre-owned pieces.
“Reluxe is a guilt-free and accessible way for people to enjoy a love of fashion and refresh their wardrobe while doing good for the planet. We all know that the cycle of more and more, cheaper and cheaper, faster and faster cannot be sustained. I have always loved shopping for vintage, but also found it so hard to trawl site after site searching for gems. Reluxe is a curated edit from my editorial point of view. The site, for me, is all about the mix, from that Prada dress to a great white shirt and summer dress. It is all about sharing my access to some of the greatest wardrobes in the world.”
“I’ve collected these bracelets over the years and they all hold different memories for me. I love blue – it calms me and reminds me of the ocean. I always crave being in nature. I find it so relaxing.”
“The jacket is Chanel, from Reluxe. I love a Chanel jacket dressed down for everyday and worn with jeans. It also holds its price and you can easily resell or hand it down, so it’s a great investment piece.”
“I mainly wear flats these days as I’m always on the go. I love these velvet Le Monde Beryl Mary Janes; they are so chic with jeans. We sell a great edit of Le Monde Beryl on Reluxe, all unworn archive pieces at exceptional prices.”
“My dress is by Tove, a British brand founded by Camille Perry and Holly Wright, who wanted to create timeless and easy clothing. They are brilliant. We sell an archive edit of their chic, understated pieces, which I love because you can wear each one for day and night easily. They never overtake or overwhelm you. This is about real women designing for real women.”
“I love meeting our customers and working with the amazing community who have supported and been involved with the brand; it really means the world to me. Everyone has a love of fashion in common and are looking for ways to consume with more care and thought.”
“Our most popular items are the Phoebe Philo-era Celine and Nicholas Ghesquière-era Balenciaga pieces, and anything Chanel. They are all great collectors’ items and always sell fast when they hit the site. But the site is also about great everyday pieces, like our edit of Frame denim, all archive pieces at nearly half the price.”
“These boots are Isabel Marant and are great worn with a dress to give it an edge. They were on Reluxe and have been snapped up by an amazingly talented designer. I was sad to see them go, but also excited that this incredible woman has invested in them and will be the next one to love them. I like to give something a twist so it doesn’t feel too classic or ladylike. I always have a bit of a grunge or rock ’n’ roll, masculine edge.”
“If I’m investing, I love the classics: a Chanel bag, Jean Paul Gaultier mesh tops, Alaïa sexy dresses, Phoebe’s Celine, Stella’s Chloé and amazing ’90s pieces. I know lots of these are on others’ wish lists, too.”
“This two-piece is from The Row. It’s so chic and understated. I wear it open with the sleeves rolled up as I think it’s good to show some skin and break it up a bit so it doesn’t drown me.”
“Buy what you love and try to make a difference. I don’t expect everyone to only buy pre-loved, but slow down, be more considered, buy better fabrics and think again when it comes to fast fashion.”
“These pieces are all so fun. The shoes are my favourites from The Row and are in perfect condition. I would wear them with black socks and old jeans for an evening out. The blazer is from Balenciaga, when Nicholas Ghesquière was creative director. I loved it when he was there. The skirt is Proenza Schouler and it’s great for a night out with a black cashmere jumper and black boots.”
“The biggest piece of advice I’ve been given is to really, really follow your instinct. I’m lucky enough to have an amazing mentor who’s been an incredible support to me. She will always remind me to do what feels right. I’ve learned this along the way and now know that when something feels a little off, it’s not right for me or the business.”
“I live in London with my family, but we always spend our holidays in New York. It’s where my husband is from and we have lots of friends and family in the States. I still style for titles including British Vogue and WSJ. Magazine and also consult with several brands. My two children are three and six, so it’s all a juggle, but I’m lucky to have a hugely supportive husband who is super-hands-on with the kids, and our nanny is just the best. I couldn’t do any of it without their support.”
“We have the most amazing Frame denim selection on Reluxe. I’ve consulted with the brand, founded by the amazing Jens and Erik. I live in their jeans! They last forever and wear so well. They’re sexy and super-flattering on the bum, which I think is key.”
“At Reluxe, we’re building a dynamic community around us and have seen a real and increasing demand for pre-loved. We’re proving every day that the appetite comes from consumers of all ages. Our ambition is to keep growing and ultimately change mindsets around shopping for pre-loved. It’s rewarding trying to make a difference.”