Meet Ali Orr, Founder & Director at Sustainable Fashion Brand: Nearly New Cashmere Co.
Nearly New Cashmere Co is a sustainable cashmere clothing and accessories brand based in the Yorkshire Dales. We restore and recycle discarded 100% cashmere pieces – transforming them into a collection of luxurious cashmere clothing and accessories which we hand-finished to an impeccable, like-new standard.
Since the business was founded in 2015, we have saved tens of thousands of cashmere pieces from going to waste, by continuously finding innovative ways to reuse discarded cashmere.
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
I’ve always been rather thrifty by nature and disliked any kind of unnecessary waste. This led me to become an early adopter of eBay, and I’ve spent many years second-hand shopping and selling, prior to founding the business.
One day, I stumbled across a source of discarded 100% cashmere. I just couldn’t bear to think that so much of this luxurious fabric could be wasted. I immediately saw the opportunity to restore these pieces to a good as new quality and sell them at affordable prices, making luxurious cashmere fashion and accessories available to a much wider market, as brand-new cashmere pieces often come at a high price point.
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How has the company evolved over the last couple of years?
Originally, it was just me working from home and selling the products at stalls and fairs. Since the early days, the business has grown significantly, I now have a small but highly skilled team supporting me. In 2019, we opened our shop in the Yorkshire Dales and launched our website, where we have gained an ever-growing eCommerce presence, selling products to customers across the world.
We’re also incredibly proud to have had the opportunity in recent years to host stalls and pop-up shops across the UK and Ireland at various events and retail stores, including John Lewis.
What can we hope to see from Nearly New Cashmere Co in the future?
We’re always looking for new ways to innovate to reuse recycled cashmere and introduce new products to our collections. For example, one of our most popular products is our elbow patches – which we actually developed after a customer suggested the idea.
As a brand, part of our mission is to do play a role in minimising the impact of the fashion industry on the environment. We’ve recently developed a modern take on a Fair Isle sweater vest that is made from recycled post-consumer waste cashmere and are excited to see how this new range grows. We are also dedicated to educating people on how to care for their clothes to make them last longer.