Laundry, which is usually perceived as a chore and unglamorous, is becoming a subject of interest. According to Cassandra research, “62% of U.S. youth have or would be willing to pay a service to do their laundry for them.” Laundry services, pop-up laundromats, laundry scents and fashion, art and technology inspired by laundry are on the rise.
At Your Service: Laundry services to make life easier are emerging. For example, in Chicago, Tide recognized this trend and introduced Tide Spin with a tagline of “Life Over Laundry.” Tide Spin offers a laundry and dry cleaning pick up and delivery service in the Chicago area. Similarly in the UK, Persil and ZipJet partnered for a three month trial period to offer on-demand laundry service. Through Persil’s mobile app and website, consumers arranged a wash & fold pick up and delivery.
Laundry Pop-Up: Brands are experimenting with pop-up laundromats as laundry services. For a weekend in September, Method partnered with Cleanly and opened a pop-up launderette in the Meatpacking District neighborhood of NYC where they offered a free wash and fold service. In preparation of the French luxury brand Hermes’ 80th anniversary of its signature silk squares, they launched a series of pop-up laundromats. The Hermes pop-ups featured washing machines in the brand’s signature orange color and customers brought their scarves to be refreshed with a blue or pink rinse and a dryer that restored their original softness. The process took 48 hours and was free of charge. The Laundress brand known for specialty laundry products like Le Labo Rose 31 and Le Labo Santal 33 Signature Detergents launched its first US Flagship store in NYC in Soho.
Fashion, Art & Technology: Laundry is also influencing fashion, art and technology. Balenciaga received a lot of press for its $2,500 “Bazar” laundry bag on the runway at Paris Fashion Week. Fashion bloggers had a field day comparing it to a Thai laundry bag, which sells for about $2.00. Instead of using a traditional art gallery, LA-based illustrator Stephanie Surtida showcased a collection of illustrations she dubbed Pretty Laundry at the Coin-Laundry in Union Square Shopping Center. Whirlpool launched the Connect to care™ Program, which uses technology to allow families to automatically donate to those in need. For every load of laundry washed, a small amount of money goes to Habitat for Humanity, to help create affordable housing in partnership with low-income families.
Scent Of Laundry: Consumers love the smell of fresh laundry and the imagery of sun-drenched sheets on a clothesline blowing in the wind. The scent of laundry continues to inspire new products. Canvas Perfume by & Other Stories is described as “the comfort of fresh cotton is captured in every drop.” Byredo’s Toile Textile Perfume is “a polymorphous fragrance meant to be sprayed on the fabrics that surround us.” It is described as “the caress of cotton jersey on the skin, the scent of pressed linen folded in an antique wardrobe.” The Laundress and John Mayer partnered to create the Out West Laundry Detergent and Fabric Fresh, which “has powdery notes with rich undertones of sandalwood, leather, and amber surrounded by spice, patchouli, and musk that captures the spirit of the American West.”
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