John Lewis is trialling a buy-back service for customers unwanted clothes to help reduce the 300,000 tonnes sent to UK landfill each year.
The store is currently testing out the scheme using 100 customers.
Each person has been allowed to sell any unwanted clothing back to the department store, regardless of its condition.
The service is app-based and links to a customers John Lewis account data, which shows what they have bought from its 50 stores or website over the past five years.
All customers have to do is select the products they want to sell, and theyre immediately shown the amount they can receive for them – much like systems that offer to buy back your old mobile phones.
However, you wont be able to sell things unless you have a minimum of £50 worth of clothing to sell, in which case a courier will collect the products within three hours.
But dont get too excited about selling a used top in order to buy your favourite takeaway the same day, because the repayment doesnt come in the form of actual cash.
As soon as the clothes have been picked up, the customer is emailed a John Lewis e-gift card for the value of the items they have sold.
Items bought back are then either resold, mended so they can be resold or recycled into new products.
So far, the trial has seen John Lewis pay £4 for a pair of broken cashmere gloves bought in 2015, £8 for a pencil skirt bought in 2014 and £11 for a top bought in 2016.
If the concept proves successful, the next stage will be to offer an option for customers to donate the money to charity.
John Lewis developed the idea with social enterprise Stuffstr, which partners with retailers to buy back used items and recycle them.
Martyn White, sustainability manager at John Lewis, said: We already take back used sofas, beds and large electrical items such as washing machines and either donate them to charity or reuse and recycle parts, and want to offer a service for fashion products.
Its estimated that the average UK household owns around £4,000 worth of clothes, but around 30% of that clothing has not been worn for at least a year, most commonly because it no longer fits.
We hope that by making it as easy as we possibly can for customers to pass on clothing that theyre no longer wearing we can ensure that the maximum life is extracted from items bought from us.
Stuffstr chief executive John Atcheson added: Every item has value, even old socks, and we want to make it as simple as possible for John Lewis customers to benefit from their unwanted clothes.
This service gives customers an incentive to buy high quality, longer-lasting products, and buying such products is a win for both customers and the environment.