Whether it be to getting dolled up for a night out on the town with your favourite gal pals to being best dressed for your first ball, girls are opting out on spending the big bucks on designer dresses and have set their sights on renting out stunning fashion pieces. Lend The Label is one of the top places where you can do so. Run by local Christchurch gal Bre Poulter, Lend The Label has surely made a name for itself in just the small 2 years it’s been operating. As well as being an industry favourite for NZ girls when it comes to borrowing out luxury threads, Bre continues to empower women to embrace their inner fashionista & feel just that little bit extra special for a night. I recently caught up with the passionate business mogul to discuss the life of Lend The Label.
Tell us a bit about yourself & how Lend The Label came about
B: When I first started Lend the Label I was a stay at home Mum with my two little girls, Mila and Kiara. I had left school in my final year to have Mila and even though I felt embarrassed at my situation it has actually become my biggest motivation. I wanted to prove to myself and everyone else that you cant let something like that set you back at all, instead it has just made me work harder and faster than I would have if the situation was any different. I have always wanted to start my own business from a young age but wasn’t sure what it would be doing. Having a massive interest in fashion I am so ecstatic to finally be apart of the industry. Lend the Label came around because I had just had Kiara and could no longer fit into any of my old designer dresses and that’s when my best friend said that you could rent dresses off girls via Facebook. The idea intrigued me and since I hadn’t been out very often over the last couple of years while the girls were babies, I looked at the whole concept with fresh eyes and saw an opportunity. After staying up all night working on a business plan, I then presented it to both my parents and from then on my Mum and I have worked on it together.
Take us through the process of borrowing out an item
B: Its super simple! You just pop over to our website and browse our collection, you can filter by size, availability and a few other things to make it easier. Once you have found your dream outfit you just book it in for the date you will wear it and a few days before your event it will arrive at your doorstep ready to go! Then all you have to do is rock it at your event and drop it back at the post shop the next day in the courier bag provided. The dry cleaning is on us to make it as easy as possible for you.
You carry such an array of designers, who is your favourite?
B: I couldn’t name a favourite, as I love them all! But the quality of the Zimmermann pieces are next level! They really are a dream come true. In saying that, I love so many others for different reasons, Natalie Rolt have the most flattering ball gowns and so does Sisters the Label. Also Bec & Bridge is my go to for a night out and the list goes on…
Eyeing up & buying new items for lend the label must be lots of fun! Is there a method in the way you choose what to buy and when?
B: Oh its just the best! Definitely a big perk of the job, last year we got to go to Sydney to bring home some amazing hand picked pieces and it was, as you can imagine, so much fun! We usually buy seasonally but if something pops up around that we still like to get it in while we can! We love taking advice from our customers and get inspo from Instagram. Also trying to cater to a wide variety of size groups too.
Social media has become such a huge part of how our generation shops and connects with retailers, how important is it for you & your business to execute it right?
B: It is our main point of focus marketing wise, without it we wouldn’t have a business at all! It’s the perfect way to connect with our customers and to share with you all what we have to offer here at LTL. But also how we keep up to date with fashion trends and what our customers are wanting.
What are some of the things you love most about your job?
B: The whole lot! I get so much joy running this amazing little business, I love the customers and connecting with you all, doing the marketing, the Technical side of things, photo shoots and everything else in-between! One of the best feelings is when we get such incredible feedback from our customers and just to know we can help you wear gorgeous designer garments in an affordable and easy way because that’s why we do what we do! The notes we get along with the returns are just the sweetest and I have kept them all because they make me so happy!
What is in the cards for lend the label in the next couple of years? How do you hope it will grow?
B: We hope to grow as much as possible within New Zealand, basically just growing our stock levels and growing alongside all the developments in technology as we go.
You are quite the girl boss goals, who are some people you look up to for inspiration?
B: Hahaha, Thank you! I have always looked up to Miranda Kerr, in my eyes she is just the best thing since sliced bread. How she manages to be so professional, down to earth, a Mother and run her business Kora Organics is truly inspirational. I have lived by her book Treasure your self since I was younger and I still sleep with is beside my bed to remind me to stay true to myself.
My other inspiration is Kris Jenner and Kim Kardashian, most people laugh when I say that one! But somehow they have created a business empire out of basically nothing and continue to go from strength to strength they dominate the “celebrity” market place without actually having a traditional talent which is quite impressive.
Other than that, I have met some amazing woman this past year who I am lucky enough to now call my friends and they are just out there giving it their best shot and they continue to inspire me every day.