Slow fashion. We all need to think about it and embrace it. In this blog I look at 5 ways to do slow fashion.
It’s something that I intend to embrace for sure. So, I’m seeking ways to feed my need to shop without starving the planet of natural resources. Which makes this blog a timely one in helping us to put on the brakes when it comes to our January sales shopping. It’s my hope that it will encourage you to be more responsible and conscious of how you shop.
Before I go any further let’s have a look at this explanation from Good on You Eco of what slow fashion is. They describe slow fashion as a fashion awareness and approach that considers the processes and resources required to make clothes. In particular the notion of slow fashion focuses on:
- Buying better-quality garments that will last for longer and values fair treatment of people, animals and the planet
As Good on You go on to point out, this switch in thinking hasn’t come a moment too soon – what with big brands such as H&M burning 12 tonnes of unsold garments per year. This despite their ongoing efforts to be more sustainable which should be applauded.
So, if you’re conscious about the environment, want to do your bit for the planet and shop with a sense of social responsibility then slow fashion is the way forward. Now I hear you cry: ‘Okay, great, nice idea Reshma. But how do I do it?’ Never fear, I’ve got five top tips on how to do slow fashion.
Buy Second Hand
This is an obvious place to start. If you want to buy clothes, instead of buying new, check out vintage shops. If you live in Swindon or the surrounding area then Kapada, the new vintage shop in Swindon’s Old Town, is worth a visit. Then of course there’s the charity shops. Don’t dismiss them as glorified jumble. I find you can discover some real treasures if you take a bit of time to look around and travel a little further afield in such places as Marlborough and Cirencester.
Buy High Quality Items
Whenever I’m on a personal shopping trip with a client, I always urge them to buy the best quality they can afford. Good quality items will last you for years – rather than one season only.
In a similar vein, consider also investing in a few timeless classics. With the basic elements of your capsule wardrobe in classic pieces, you only need to buy one or two items per season to update your wardrobe or to give a nod to the trend of the season. Even then, buy the best that you can afford.
Only Buy Things You Love
This is my other mantra for all my personal shopping clients. If you stick to this rule, you won’t buy a lot of clothes. Only buy items that you love with all your heart and that make you feel and look amazing. With this method, you’ll give conscious thought to what you’re buying and won’t buy items simply to make do. A natural consequence of conscious shopping is that you’ll buy fewer clothes. And if you’re getting them second-hand, that’s another win!
Certain shops and websites make specific statements about how sustainable and ethical their product range is. I have to tell you that, IMHO, this is difficult to establish. Why? Because, within one shop they can have an item made in a sustainable and ethical way – and fifty more that haven’t. It’s a minefield for the shopper trying to do their bit. It’s impossible to know – and even harder to take on trust. It’s my firm belief that the fashion industry needs to address this situation sooner rather than later. They must be clear about where their clothes come from and the processes used to make them and what the carbon footprint is of each item. Only then can the beleaguered consumer have a hope of making an informed choice.
So, as far is it’s reasonable for you so to do, shop with ethics and fair-trade uppermost in your mind. These three websites are a good place to start:
Many charities and other organisations promote such initiatives as Second-hand September. This campaign, organised by the charity Oxfam, encourages people to avoid buying anything new for the whole thirty days of the month. The campaign’s aim is to heighten awareness of the environmental effects of the worst excesses of the fashion industry.
When people come shopping with me, they find they use that shopping trip to buy timeless classics that form a capsule wardrobe. That done, they have no need to go shopping again until our next meeting. In effect then, they’re only doing two or three shopping trips per year. And, of course, they’re buying only clothes that make them look and feel amazing.
I can see that all this encouragement to buy fewer clothes might seem surprising coming from a personal shopper! After all, my living depends on people coming to me for shopping trips. But in fact, my whole ethos is one of buying things that last and creating that capsule wardrobe where you have fewer clothes yet more outfits. In wanting you to consider with care, the items you buy, my personal shopping principles do in fact tie in with the slow fashion ethos.
If you would like to find out more about how to get a personal shopping trip with me and how to shop sustainably then please do get in touch.
That aside, I need your help. I want to increase the way that I work, around being sustainable, ethical and a friend to the environment. So please – what are your tips and advice? Find me on Instagram, LinkedIn or Facebook and connect with me. I’d love to hear from you