Cally Russell is the co-founder of This Is Unfolded, a company that creates made-to-order clothes, and then reinvests the money back into the communities who are creating them.
When the pandemic hit in 2020, brands cancelled over $2 billion dollars worth of clothes orders with factories that were mainly in developing countries. This left workers without jobs or livelihoods and an estimated hundreds of millions of pieces of clothing destined for landfill.
To solve this problem, Cally created Lost Stock, which sold mystery boxes of clothing to people around the world to save them from being wasted and support factory and garment workers. The goal was to sell 10,000 boxes, but the team ended up selling 125,000. This Is Unfolded continues this new way of shopping by taking excess stock out of the equation.
In this episode, you’ll learn Cally’s top tips on how to rethink the status quo in your industry, just how much clothing is sent to landfill in a normal retail model, and how to find purpose-led shoppers and build a community around them.
Elly: Today on the Conscious Commerce podcast, I'm joined by Cally Russell. He's the founder of this has unfolded. Welcome Cally to the podcast. How’s it going?
Cally: Hey, Elly, thanks so much for having me. Yeah, really good. Really, really good. It's 8AM in sunny Scotland. So yeah, a great way to start the day.
Elly: Sunny Scotland?
Cally: Yeah, like it's not gonna stay for a long period of time. I don't want to trick anyone into thinking that this is your sunny holiday destination in the near future. But yeah, we've had like a week of sunshine, which in Scotland it's a big deal, basically.
Elly: Yeah, I was gonna say you don't really hear about Scotland being a sunny destination. So that's cool. You're getting your vitamin D over there.
Cally: For a very short period of time, Elly, for a very short period of time, we're getting our vitamin D.
Elly: So This Is Unfolded’s mission is to remove waste from the fashion industry and use the savings to create clothing that is better for you, better for the environment and better for the world. But before we get into the business side of things, I'd like to get to know you a little bit better first as a person. So what’s a fun fact about you that not many people know or your go to party trick?
Cally: Oh, that's such a really difficult question because I don't think I'm great at parties to be honest with you. Like, like my introvert comes out, which is not normally the case. It's going to continue our Scottish theme – when I was younger, I used to play the bagpipes. So I very much live that Scottish cliche, I still have a set and I could probably give you a tune. And then I would collapse in a heap because it takes so much lungs and lips sort of energy to do.
Elly: Yeah, I struggled to blow a balloon, so I'm wondering, is the bagpipe like that times 10?
Cally: Times 1000, to be honest with you. Basically, you learn to play the bagpipes by learning to play a different instrument when you're young. So like a chance to learn how to do the little finger movements and stuff. And then as you get to like a certain age, you then get taught how to do the bagpipe bit, because it takes such lung capacity and also like your lips to be strong enough to be able to blow inside for a prolonged period of time. It's a really weird sort of instrument and one of the few instruments that probably makes you physically fitter the more that you use it.
Elly: So do you ever bring it out for special occasions?
Cally: The last time I played this, it was my dad's 60th which was like six years ago, so no, no really. I could do that. I just choose not to for everyone involved. It's better.
Elly: But that's a great thing to do for your dad, I feel like for a 60th.
Cally: You didn’t hear it Elly, you didn’t hear it. Like you say it's a great thing to do if you've had you know, it did sound awful, so yeah, there is that side as well.
Elly: And then you passed out afterwards.
Cally: Oh, yeah, like I lasted like three minutes and then I was done, and I went to bed.
Elly: noissue is a global community, so we to like to get a sense of where you're from in the world. So where do you call home and what's special about that place?
Cally: So I now live in Edinburgh. I'm originally from a small town called Diden which is basically on the west coast of Scotland. And I'm from 25 minutes away from town. I live in the middle of nowhere, but it's absolutely beautiful. I've actually been there for the last couple of days, it’s one of those beautiful places you can go in the world. It's absolutely amazing. But there's nothing there at all. I went for a run yesterday morning and I ran for an hour and I saw two people in an hour’s run like running along like a main road. I highly recommend anyone go there for the holiday. I live in Edinburgh, which despite being a small city, I think it's like an instantly globally recognized city. Like everyone knows Edinburgh has the festivals. I used to travel a lot for work, but obviously that's all stopped. I think there's this thing called a global pandemic, so like we're all stuck – we're stuck at this point.
Elly: Just a small scale event.
Cally: I don't know if you've heard about it Elly, I know life is kind of slightly more normal in New Zealand. That's where I live. That's where I call home. And yeah, I absolutely love it.
Elly: And if you weren't the founder of This is Unfolded what industry or job do you think you'd be working in right now?
Cally: So I do love this question. I would love to think I’d be playing football for Liverpool Football Club. But that is a total lie, because I am nowhere near good enough. But if we could just pretend that I was then that's what it would be like. Outside of that, I don't know. I think it'd be trying to change something, somewhere. I think that's kind of part my DNA of finding problems and thinking that you can make them better for the industry or the sector that I really have no idea, but yeah, professional footballer for Liverpool Football Club.
Elly: Yeah, that's the aspirational, lofty goal.
Cally: No, it's true. Like, it's totally true Elly.
Elly: Okay, we’ll lock it in. Moving into more serious things, when the pandemic took hold in 2020, this figure really blew my mind – brands cancelled more than $2 billion worth of clothing orders with factories that were mainly in developing countries, and this led you to the idea for Lost Stock. So how did that idea come to you at this moment? And what were you doing when all of this was – forgive the pun – unfolding?
Cally: So basically, we run a business called Mozi. What we’ve done is we’ve built a consumer site for shopping up that's a little bit like Tinder but for clothes. And what we were doing with that is we’re building this huge insights database, helping brands and retailers to decide on what to make. So we're using all that data to kind of make predictions about trends about products that should be brought to market, we'd grown that to 635 million customer opinions, and it had like 1.5 million downloads. And then the pandemic came along and stopped us in our tracks. And all of a sudden, all these brands and retailers weren't actually buying stock anymore. So we then saw what was happening when people were canceling all these orders. It was a really horrible situation. We saw these articles appearing, and I remember the main article was one we read on the BBC news website. I remember reading this BBC News article, which had this line in it, basically that said, If Coronavirus doesn't kill my workers, then starvation will, and reading that kind of going, there's something to be done here. So as a team, we got together and we kind of said, well, how can we impact this? And we came up with this idea which we ended up calling lost stock, which was that we would basically sell the clothes that had been made and completed for other people to help the factories generate revenues, so they could pay back the lines of credit. But what we would also do is that we would take the candidate, the margin and the money that was made, and invest that directly into helping garment workers out the other side. So it's a crazy sort of idea, because all this product is currently sitting in warehouses in developing countries, and we've never moved any product before in our life, would never touch the supply chain, we've never had to buy directly from factories. So we put this together. And there's a couple of other challenges in the sense of, we can take pictures of any of it, because it's all sitting in these warehouses. Even if we could take pictures of it, we weren't sure if we were allowed to show the pictures because of the design rights associated to the products. So we then said, let's just go for it and what we'll do is we'll sell these clothes as like a mystery packet. So instead of picking individual pieces, you'd basically tell us ‘I like these sorts of colors, this is my size, this is my gender, this is my age,’ and then we would match you up against the stock that had been canceled. We ended up buying stock that had been cancelled by nearly 50 different brands. So it's a huge number of brands that have gone through this process, so we put this together. And the idea was you buy a mystery packet, you help the factories, but for every order, we will support a garment worker and her family in Bangladesh for a week. Okay, so it's like something good for you. You're stopping stuff going to landfill, and you're having a positive impact on someone else's life. So our target for this was to sell 10,000 packets. We hit 10,000 after five days. And actually over the course of seven months, we ended up selling 125,000 of these packets, enabling us to save like, you know, I think over 400,000 items of clothing from potentially ending up in landfill. But at the same time, we ended up supporting in Bangladesh 113,000 people for over a month each during the pandemic just from the money that we generated from lost stock process. It turns out, it's not super easy to do something like that in terms of delivering all that and building the infrastructure behind it. So, you know, we got lots of things wrong. But at the end of the day, we had this really, really huge impact. And yet, that's like the start of the journey, and the kind of the piece that we're on now.
Elly: Yeah, I would really like to talk a bit more about the impact that had on the livelihood of people who work in these garment factories, as well as the waste that you managed to divert from landfill. How much are we talking? Like, what kind of feedback were you getting?
Cally: In the end, in terms of the families, the volume was 113,000 people who were given enough to support themselves for just over a month each. We focused on garment workers, who were facing hardship. So they may have been in some of the factories that were being stopped from who didn't have the kind of the resources to support them who have been impacted by cancellations. Or they were also helping garment factory owners where the factories had just totally closed down. The reason why we picked Bangladesh was that the lack of safety net. Like this was one of the biggest countries hit by this. If you think that something like 84% of the Bangladeshi export economy is linked to fashion sales, which is just a huge amount for that to kind of come out that we were like, we can make an impact here as quickly as we possibly can. And at the end of it, we can look back and say, we really did make an impact, 2020 was a crazy year for so many people. And I'm really proud of our team, instead of feeling sorry for ourselves, we actually just kind of turned everything very quickly and said, let's go and make a really positive impact. And I think we can look back at it and say that, yeah, we definitely, we definitely did.
Elly: Yeah, you definitely did. It's incredible. And I'm curious, what learnings did you take from Mallzee that helped you in this situation of creating Lost Stock? Like what insights there helped you actually respond so quickly?
Cally: So I think that the biggest thing is that you've just got to try things that you've got to put something out really, really quickly. See if it takes, see what happens, and then follow in behind that. We use a lot of our own data knowledge about how do we match customer, against product sort of thing. I think the thing that we had no idea about and how complicated it was was the kind of logistics. And that's the bit where we made the most mistakes. It turns out building a global supply chain in the middle of a pandemic is a little bit difficult. But at the end of the day, we did everything we could and we had this amazing impact. And now it's allowed us to continue that into the work that we're doing with This Is Unfolded and what we're trying to build here as like a long-term impact driven replacement.
Elly: Yeah, because the mystery boxes probably aren't gonna work in the longer term right, so how did you turn that initial response into a long-term business model with This is Unfolded?
Cally: You're totally right. And there's two parts of the Lost Stock piece that are always going to be short-term offerings. So the first piece is that that whole business model is relying on you accessing stock that has been cancelled and it does actually become quite difficult to secure and go through that process. The second part of it is that a mystery packet of clothes is a one-off purchase, maybe a twice-off purchase, it's not a repeatable purchase model. What we decided to do was, let's create something that can replace this long term and have a really positive impact. So for us as a business, what we've always been about is how do we remove waste from the retail sector, but we've always been focused on doing that in conjunction with other brands or other retailers and using data to do that. But all of a sudden, we're kind of saying, well, why do we need to work within their model, we now know all these factories, we have done the supply chain piece. We've always been inhibited by the adoption rate or the model that these other businesses have. Why don’t we go and do this ourselves? So our idea was, can we remove the 30 to 40% of product that is wasted in this system – and when I say like wasted, I mean this is the product that never gets sold, so like 30% of clothes that are made are never sold. That's just the most wild statistic in the world. And it's something that we've all just kind of accepted that it’s fine. But it's not.
Elly: I didn’t know that was a thing. So in a normal retail model, about 30% of the products created are wasted. They're not sold, they just go to the landfill?
Cally: Just not sold. Some go to landfills, some will be used in different ways. I'm not gonna talk about people's names, but there's one story where there's an entire power plant that is basically powered by burning clothes that a retailer can't sell. There's another one where a big luxury brand is burning $14 million worth of stock, because they couldn't sell it and they didn't want to discount it, because then that damages the luxury brand element of what they're doing. If you just think about that you see that this industry is broken, right? This is before we get into discounting all these sorts of different things that can come through. The whole idea behind Unfolded is what we're doing is taking away that waste, saving the money from it, and then investing that into positive change. How that works, in practice, basically, we design clothes using a data framework. So we're not based on my opinion, or someone else's opinion in the business of what's going to sell, we're basically starting off by saying the data shows us what people want, what people like. Once we've designed clothes in that framework, we then take it to our actual customers and get them involved in the process. So we have what's known as the Unfolded creator community. And that's basically people who have purchased from us already and they help us get feedback. So we will take all the designs to them and then they'll walk through them and tell us which ones they like, which ones they don't like and what they want us to change. What I love about this point is that if the person that gives us the best feedback, we then name the item after them. So someone walks away with being like, I got to name that piece of clothing because I gave them this feedback. And then the next piece is that when we then put items up for sale, like once they've gone through the creator group, we put items for sale, but we only produce after we've taken orders. So it means that there's a delay in delivery. So it's about four to six weeks for delivery instead. But by doing all of this, we remove all that waste. With that waste then being removed, we then invest in positive change.
So we have an Unfolded worker Fund, which pays extra money to the workers that work with our products. But also, we decided that the biggest thing that we could impact was providing education around our factories, and like in the communities where our clothes are made. So also the money taken, we invest in supporting children through education through an organization called Pratham in India, which is where we're currently purchasing clothes. So we've been trialing Unfolded now for two collections, keeping it really small, making an amazing customer experience, and making sure that we can deliver all the time, like really, really working hard on that. Even just for those two trial runs, we’ve supported over 1000 children in education for the next 12 months, which is pretty powerful, plus stopping anything going to landfill. So that's what we're building and to us, basically, the way that we think about it is this is designed to be like a new model of retail.
So if you think you've got your traditional retail, you've got your fast fashion retail, we're basically going like this is your conscious consumerism version of retail, which doesn't have to cost more money, because for the vast majority of consumers, you cannot charge them more money. But we can deliver you all these positives: positive for the environment, positive for workers, like all these sorts of different stages, we can give it to you at the same price. But we have to then change the underlying model that kind of comes through to make our work and mix it all together.
Elly: So your community is driving the clothing and asking for what they want and requesting changes. How do you decide who's part of that Unfolds creators community and how much feedback do you take on board, in terms of what they're after?
Cally: To become a part of the community, you have to purchase from us. Once you've bought from us, then you're actively invited to join the community. Nearly 40% of people come and join the community after that point. And the community is the most amazing place, I absolutely love it. Because as much as it's like talking to the community, it's also the community talking to each other. I think a lot of time, social media or the internet can feel like a pretty horrible place. I actually think the community feels like the happiest place on the internet. I've seen someone's describe it as that, because it's people connecting with each other, people talking about how they're wearing items. And because we sell relatively limited collections, we've had people coming in talking about what's happened to them while wearing the clothes. So we've had people who have been offered jobs or people who've got engaged, like all these sorts of different things, and then sharing that in the community with other people that are on this sort of journey with them. So we absolutely love that. In terms of how we take feedback, we have like a scoring system where you people vote on products, we have direct feedback against products. And then we use all of that to then make the final collection and the final balance. So it's this really interesting approach where we're balancing data with community. And by utilizing the two at the same time, our bet is that you end up with a much, much better outcome, the process and so far, that's been proven by our return rates being insanely low and industry beating and our repeat customer rates are super, super high. And I think that all shows that we're building something here that's really, really powerful, and maybe small to start off with. But we're now kind of at the point where we can really kick on with that.
Elly: What you're doing is so unique in the fashion industry – is there such thing as too much transparency or too much openness on taking the customer on the journey with you, or so far as that proved to be really positive?
Cally: I really believe in that. We did a post collection where we basically opened up like all the stats behind it. So we said this is what the return rate is, this is what the error rate was, all these sorts of different things, so that everyone can understand it. So it's like some things that we're like, we can't fix that yet. But we've heard you, and like we will get to, but these are the ones that we can fix out the other side. So I've loved seeing that. We also do something a bit unusual with it with the community group. Returns is such a huge issue in the retail sector. So what we did was, we obviously offer returns, but what we said is that a lot of the same returns come back too late in the business. So these have been made specifically for you guys, because you've placed the orders against them. So instead of doing traditional returns, why don’t we make a peer to peer swapping piece. So what we've then heard is like if the size is slightly off, or if you don't like the color on, we've said to people, well post it in the community, and then we'll pay the postage, so that if you can, you can swap with someone else in the community. And we've seen loads of people do that. So there's loads of these little things that you can play with in the retail model once you've tackled that overarching waste bit. Like if you think of the traditional brand or the retailer, because that overarching waste sets in the model, you can't change much because you're just stuck, you're inhabited by it. But if you can tackle that bit, you can then start to do some really interesting and fun stuff out the side. And, you know, I think back to the question on transparency, is I think if you're transparent about what you're trying to do in the process, and the issues that you're gonna face, especially when you try to do something totally new, I think people can get on board with that, and really understand it.
Elly: Yeah, that's awesome. And I also read on your website that you don't call This Is Unfolded a sustainable brand, because the retail industry will never be 100% sustainable. So I'd love to talk about the language you consciously use when it comes to describing your impact.
Cally: There's a lot of people who say the word sustainable. We're still all producing, okay, so you can't be producing and claim that you're fully fledged sustainable. But what we can be is we can be better than the alternative. And that's really what we're focused on is, how can we be better than the alternative? But how can we also then be accessible out the other side, and accessibility, I think when we start to talk about conscious consumerism is, is something that cannot be ignored. Someone told me about this amazing study in America where things Walmart or Target basically tested the impact of Made in America. So obviously, Americans like love the whole Made in America, the most proud nation in the world. And basically, they tested the concept where they had two of the same black t-shirts. And one was like Made in America and like on the stand had loads of American flags, right? That one was made in Mexico next to it. And there was like, $1 difference between the two of them, and they put them beside each other on sale. The mexican one massively outsold the American one, like people wouldn't pay just a little bit extra for that made in America-ness and this is when we think about sustainability. When we think about the sector that we are in, some people will pay extra, but the vast majority of consumers are not able to, or they have been conditioned to not. And if we want to make fundamental change, we need to offer something to those consumers at a price point that is accessible. So what we're doing is saying how can we make sure that this competes on price with the alternative that is not going to be as good for workers or the environment or whatever it is that kind of comes through from it. So, for us, that's really, really, really, really important. I'm not sitting here saying like, we've not got everything perfect, we're working through that process, like we're trying to use the best materials, but one of the issues with certain sustainable materials is the lead times on them are like significantly longer. And if something significant, the longest lead time that impacts on our model. So it's like, how do you balance all these things through? And how do you try to make the best decisions as you possibly can as you go through that process.
Elly: And what's next on the horizon for This Is Unfolded? How are you planning on making your processes more sustainable in the future?
Cally: So we've done our first two collections now, which we are super excited about and have gone really well, we've only got five star reviews on Trustpilot. We've seen this amazing repeat customer return rate. And like, we've got all this excitement and this amazing community now of people who have built up to help us kind of to see this through. And we've delivered those units in a very short space of time, which allows us to test all the different parts of the process. So for us, we're going to go through another period of learning. What we built, the two trial runs are still quite substantial. And in reality still put us into a seven figure business sort of like straight off the backs are things that run rate. Like we can figure out how to make this amazing, hopefully really quickly with that community, and then scale it and have a really positive impact. I'd love in 12 month time to come back and do this and say we'd helped 1000 kids by that point. Whatever that number looks like, and had that really positive impact just by removing waste from the model.
Elly: I'd love to revisit it too! And I was wondering, can anyone in the world buy from This Is Unfolded at the moment, or is it not quite global yet?
Cally: Not yet, but please, please go visit This Is Unfolded and you can register for like access when we open up the other places. You can follow our journey on social media and all these sorts of different places. But yeah, we're only shipping to the UK just now and the reason being with Lost Stock, we shipped to 10 different countries and we set all that off and had it running within a seven month period. We were turning on countries based on demands behind them.. We’re taking it a bit slower this time around to make it all work and be super, super happy with it.
Elly: But that's great with Lost Stock, you saw that the model works it resonates globally with people. So when you get to that point it'll be great.
Cally: 100%. If you're in the UK, come and give us a whirl, give us a buy. If you're not in the UK, just head across the site, and you can register to get first access when we set up in your country. We can give it a go at that point in time.
Elly: Great Plug!
Cally: Did you like it?
Elly: It was a good one. I was going to ask you to plug everything at the end but you bet me to it.
Cally: Just in case everyone drops off by this point, I've got my plug in now. Sorry, what are you saying?
Elly: What would be your advice for the fashion brands that are looking to reduce their waste or overhaul their models like you've done?
Cally: I think we have this thing where we ask brands to be better. And I'm now probably just of the opinion it's just time to build better brands, sort of thing. I think the question that I would pose and it's the question that I always pose, is why are we making this product? Like, are we sure this product is going to sell? And it's not enough just to say, I think it's going to sell, you know what I mean, you've got to have real data to back up that decision. And that's not what happens. I think also, I would kind of challenge that so many businesses are so focused on how many skews do they have in the website and get overly excited about, ‘We've got X number of skews, we released 200 new products every day’, or whatever that number is. And again, that to me is like just a fundamentally broken model. Like, if you're releasing 200 new products every single day, chances are that you don't actually know which products are going to sell. If we are serious about sustainability, about ethics, about all these sorts of different things, we have to change that model. Because you're actually just buying 200 things, throwing at the wall, see what happens, and you're wasting so much in that process. My question would be how do you change that? How do you move that forward within your organization?
Elly: For the brands out there who haven't invested in sustainability or social impact yet, based on the response to you saying that this entirely new model you've built, why should they do it now? What will it mean for the future success of their brand?
Cally: I think most of the times when businesses get in trouble or retail is in trouble is that they try to be all things to all people. There's one fast fashion retailer in the UK, which has had really bad press for certain things, and it's changed some of them, but none of that slowed down their sales growth, there will always be people that want to consume it that are a piece that's really upsetting. We can try to educate, we can try to change those people. But chances are, that's where they are, they're not going to move en masse to where they need to be another piece. So instead, what it comes down to is that the rest of us just have to do that bit more. If enough of us do it, then it has that same sort of impact. This is just my personal opinion on it. You're not going to change the person that is addicted to fast fashion. They're in that space.
Elly: Yeah, so a reframing of that question is, if there are purpose-led brands out there, how do they find that community of conscious consumers? In the sea of all these other consumers?
Cally: How do you find your tribe?
Elly: Yeah, that aligns with your values and your business values?
Cally: You’ve just got to keep talking, do you know what I mean? Try to profile them down: who have you got today? How engaged are they with you, and then profile it from that point. I think often retailers or businesses have this vision of who they want their customers to be. And often it mirrors who they are, whilst in reality, who the customer actually is, is different. They want that customer maybe because that customer’s cool, or that customer’s edgy. And there's this customer over here that's a much better fit. Don't be wedded to it, if that's who wants to buy my product, if I can build my community here, if they align with my values, then that builds out. I think what's interesting, from my perspective, is we make women's clothes. So my customers are not me, it's never going to be me. Actually, at some stage in the future we will do menswear. But it has to be in the mindset of, I'm not trying to appeal to me, I'm trying to appeal to those people. And then it's like, well, where does that community hang out? Who's the leaders in that community? How can I reach those people?
Elly: That's interesting – with the This Is Unfolded model, you think that will work for men as well, in the future, they'll be interested in that kind of approach to fashion?
Cally: We've already got a men's waitlist, we've really got a kids waitlist. It might be that it's not the men buying, it may be that it's someone else buying for them, or someone else getting the feedback on it. But yeah, like, I think our model works for many different customer groups. And it's how do you tap into all of them? And how do you connect up with all of them as you're kind of going forward?
Elly: I was going to say my partner does not care about fashion at all, so the mystery box model would probably work for him, permanently.
Cally: It did really, really, really well with men, the mystery box model. But you know, there's also a lot of women who like to buy their other half clothes. So it's then saying to them, you can help decide what they want to design for him. And that comes out and that becomes quite an attractive model. But yeah, with the mystery box for the men, we had some really jazzy shirts in it from like one brand at one point in time and one had lobsters all over it.
Elly: Like loud party shirts?
Cally: Yeah, they were definitely out there and like one of them turned up on TV, a TV personality in the UK wore it and everyone's was really excited.
Elly: The lobster shirt, just to be clear?
Cally: Yeah. I don't want to finish like the conversation right here being like come and buy our clothes like they're really cool and interesting with, ‘Hey we make lobster shirts.’ I want to make it very clear. We don't make lobster shirts. We just accidentally sold them for a period of time.
Elly: I think it would really liven up the environment when people were doing remote calls working from home if they rocked up in a crazy lobster shirt.
Cally: I think it would liven up most situations, a lobster shirt, to be honest with you. But it’s going to take a brave man together to give it a go at that point. To me, clothing’s a really interesting sector and one of the reasons why I work in this retail sector is because even if you are not engaged in fashion, per se, clothing impacts everyone's lives, we all have to wear clothes, like all the time. What we've got now is what I consider like a push model. I'm a brand, I've produced this stuff, and now I’m pushing it out to all. And I'm telling you this is what I should buy. And I'm taking these like stores, and I'm filling it with this stuff. What we're trying to create is basically a pull model, which is that choices are being pulled by the consumer. And the consumer is telling us, this is what we want, this is what we want to buy. And by moving from this push model to this pull model, we can cut out the waste in the middle, and then do something really positive with that.
Elly: And the consumers are so much more empowered that way as well, in their decisions.
Cally: Exactly, they’re a part of it, and they're engaged. Who doesn't love the idea of, I helped design this top that I'm wearing?
Elly: Or it’s named after me.
Cally: It's named after me! We've loved that, too, seeing people who have bought the thing that's named after them. And then like, the pictures that they take, and the happiness that you see from them. That to me is absolutely buzzing, like I get really excited about seeing that.
Elly: And how do you define and measure the impact of your work? What does success look like for you?
Cally: Personally, because I'm Scottish, like, there's no such thing as success. There's only just like, more work to be done.
Elly: That kind of sounds like New Zealand.
Cally: Yeah, I’m really, really bad at that so I'm trying to get better. So for us, it comes down to two pieces. So the two things that we're looking at is how many lives have we impacted? Like how many people have we helped, because of the savings that we've made? And then how much waste that we saved from the traditional model? What does success look like on each one of them? Well, I don't really know yet. If I'm being honest. We have lofty aspirations, and hopefully, you know, it's tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of people who will be helped over a period of time. We'll do another podcast then Elly, we're going to do one in one year's time and then seven years.
Elly: Lock it in.
Cally: So, basically I can look back on it and say, hey, we've helped hundreds of thousands of people or millions of people in that time. All because we made a new retail model. That to me gets really, really exciting. It's not easy. It'll likely have lots of challenges along the way. But fundamentally, if you believe in something, you've just got to go and give it a try.
Elly: 100%. and you beat me to this before, but let's recap, where can everyone find This is Unfolded online?
Cally: Oh, did I sneak in a plug halfway through the podcast? I did sneak in a plug halfway through the podcast. I've got two plugs in now. That's not bad for me to be honest with you. I was surprised I didn't just shout it out in random places. If you have enjoyed listening to my incoherent rambling or my stories of playing the bagpipes or wanting to play for Liverpool Football Club, or more importantly, if you just want to try a different way of shopping, then it's ThisIsUnfolded.com or across social media on This Is Unfolded. If you live in the UK, then you can buy from us now or in our next collection. If you live internationally, please like or follow us or register – you can find the box at the bottom of the website, where you can put in your email address and we'll keep updating you as we open up other countries, that's our aspiration. And we will do that as quickly as we possibly can. We're coming out of this horrible period, you know, yesterday was Freedom Day in the UK, which is amazing that the virus can just leave what they like if you just demand that as your freedom day. So we're coming through this period of time, and there’s no better time to make better choices. And better choices don't necessarily mean more expensive, worse quality, or anything that kind of comes through from that. If you change the model underneath, which is what we've done, so please, I'm not begging but I am also begging, please come and give us a chance. Because I think you'll absolutely love it.
Elly: Wow, that was a great wrap up.
Cally: It was a definite plug.
Elly: It's been awesome. Thank you so much.
Cally: It's been an absolute delight. Thank you so much for your time.