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Downturn makes Aussies borrow Prada & Co

[ 2009-09-11 13:19]     字号 [] [] []  
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SYDNEY: Recession-hit fashionistas wanting to look a million dollars without paying so much are keeping up appearances and fuelling a new industry in Australia - online fashion rentals.

Struggling with redundancy or lower salaries, many Australian women are following in the designer footsteps of their American peers and resorting to renting designer clothes and accessories from online websites or buying them second-hand.

"We have experienced a huge growth particularly in the last three months. It seems like the downturn has done wonders for business," said Simonne Santana, founder of Love Me and Leave Me (www.lovemeandleaveme.com), the first and one of the biggest fashion-borrowing websites in Australia.

"We've experienced record membership intakes and rental intakes. It's obviously a trend that people have warmed to," she said, adding the site now has 5,000 members who can also buy used, or new, designer wear at a discount.

"I think in this tough economic time, everyone is having to rethink what they're spending and have to be a little smarter with their money," said Simone Marshall, a shoe store employee and an avid party-goer who, like many women, doesn't like to wear the same dress to more than a few occasions.

"I have quite a designer palate and like having beautiful dresses. Now I can have four for the price of one."

The recession has also boosted business for Stevie Dellamarta, who launched Indian Giver (www.indiangiver.com.au) earlier this year, specializing in high-end Australian designers including Willow, Kirrily Johnston and Camilla and Marc.

Dellamarta credits the hit movie Sex and the City, in which one of the characters admits she borrows all her designer handbags, for exposing Australians to the idea, but says borrowing is not really mainstream yet.

"While I think the borrowing revolution is coming, I don't think it's here yet. I think it's going to be a huge industry in years to come," she said.


1. What is the name of Simonne Santana’s clothing rental business?

2. How many members does Simonne Santana’s site have?

3. What movie does Dellamarta credit for her idea to start the renting company?


1. Love Me and Leave Me.

2. 5,000.

3. Sex and the City.

(英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Downturn makes Aussies borrow Prada & Co

About the broadcaster:

Downturn makes Aussies borrow Prada & Co

Chantal Anderson is a multimedia journalist at the China Daily Web site. Originally from Seattle, Washington she has found her way around the world doing photo essays in Greece, Mexico and Thailand. She is currently completing a double degree in Journalism and International Studies from the University of Washington.