Many fashionistas wait with bated breath for Autumn and Winter so they can start stocking up on the season’s newest coats, boots, scarfs, and hats. That being said, many are aware of the pitfalls of fast fashion and shopping in general – particularly around Christmas time. In this article, we’ll be sharing some great tips on how you can make more sustainable fashion choices throughout the colder weather.
FAST FASHION = A BIG PROBLEM
Every year, we throw out around 350,000 tonnes of unused clothes, which are worth an estimated £140 million. Our throwaway habits get particularly bad around Christmas time as we buy party clothes and novelty items for the festive season. According to the environmental charity, Hubbub, a quarter of Christmas jumpers are worn only once before being tossed into the landfill.
And it’s not just waste that’s the problem. Many of these clothes have been cheaply made using harsh chemicals, synthetic fibres, and unethical production practises. Those snug faux fur coats that are popular throughout Winter, for instance, are often made with acrylic and polyester and shed microplastics when washed.
But still, we continue to buy clothes like this. Why exactly? Well, everyone likes a bargain, even if we don’t make use of what we’re buying.
The problem with this, however, is that it’s fuelling climate change. Our insatiable appetite for a continually-moving conveyor belt of the latest fashions is driving CO2 emissions, polluting our waters, and warming our planet.
It’s more than possible to be sustainable and look great through Autumn and Winter. If you’re going through your wardrobe and planning outfits for the coming months, here are some tips to make sure you’re doing it in the most environmentally-friendly way possible.
CONSIDER YOUR CLOTHES
The fashion world is going through a revolution and is gradually winding down the tradition of designing clothes for every season. Just this year, Gucci and Prada announced that they would no longer conform to the Spring/Summer, Autumn/Winter design rota, and instead their clothes would be ‘season-less’. Speaking of these seasonal labels, Gucci’s creative director, Alessando Michele, said “I think these are stale and underfed words…clothes should have a longer life than that which these words attribute to them.”
With this in mind, ask yourself if you really need a new coat or that pair of boots? If you bought similar items last year, are they still in good condition? If so, keep them, continue to wear them, and avoid buying new things that you don’t need. If you do need to buy new clothes (more advice on this below), buy for the long-term.
RE-IMAGINE ‘OLD’ CLOTHES
(Credits – @mila.guan and @themetalromantic)
Before hitting the shops for new clothes, why not try to breathe some new life into your current cold-weather wardrobe? Patch up your jackets with some design flair, take your boots to an old-school cobbler to get a genuine vintage makeover, or try dyeing your woollies with a new colour. There are many you can re-work your clothes – get creative and see how you can refresh your Autumn/Winter wardrobe.
If you really do need some new clothes for the months ahead, consider buying them ‘pre-loved’. Buying clothes that someone else once owned extends their useful lifetime and prevents them from being thrown into the landfill. Aside from improving your green credentials, it’s also easier on your pocket – you can get incredible items at a fraction of the original price. And the most recent surveys suggest that more and more people in the UK are opting to buy pre-loved over brand-new.
If you’re looking to join them, there are plenty of places to buy high-quality second-hand clothes – eBloggers, Vinted, and Hardly Ever Worn It are just a few well-known names. Shop around and see what fits your style.
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR READING!
This is a contributed post.