How to Follow Fashion AND Reduce our Fashion Footprint

Following on from our previous blog where we looked at how the manufacturing process in the fashion industry is damaging the environment; we thought that we would look at some changes that we can make to our buying habits to reduce our own fashion footprint when shopping for new outfits.

We all need clothes, that’s a given, however there are some sustainable ways that we can shop for them so we can be a bit more conscious, while not compromising on style:

1. Charity Shops
An obvious choice, but charity shops are a great starting point both for giving away your unwanted garments and treating yourself to new ones – all while helping a cause. Charity shops are great to have a rummage around in, not everything is necessarily second hand these days. Rather than keeping to my local shops, I like to visit them in other areas too – I have snapped up some amazing bargain designer clothes doing this! Additionally, some charities even have websites now so you can buy direct, Oxfam has a brilliant site and a great selection to suit all ages.

2. Fashion swaps
This is a really sociable way to own a sustainable wardrobe. We all have a friend whose wardrobe we’d love to have, why not organise a fashion swap event you can invite your friends, and your friends’ friends even to come along and exchange clothes. This is a fun way to gain a new wardrobe while having a catch up!

3. Buying and selling sites
There are plenty of buying and selling sites available, beyond eBay which is the go-to for many, take a look at some that we use:
More than a buying and selling site, Depop lets you connect with your friends and make new ones, so you can see what they’re buying and selling too! You can search for specific items, or scroll through the marketplace on the homepage to see if anything catches your eye.
It follows a similar concept to Depop, a great way to connect with a community of sellers and snap up some bargains! There are also forums available where you can swap style or beauty tips, and talk to people about other topics that interest you.
No different to Depop and Vinted, is another offering that allows you to build a profile and connect with fellow shoppers while you shop online for second hand treats!

4. Choose Organic or Ethical Stores
Believe it or not, buying organic clothes is an option these days, some high street stores have ethical ranges or policies so we can feel less guilty about buying brand new (H&M Conscious, M&S Plan A). There are also environmentally-friendly and Fairtrade clothing options from brands such as People Tree, thought, komodo among others.

As Vivienne Westwood once famously said, ‘buy less, choose well, make it last.’

In the final blog of the series, we will be looking at other ways that we can reduce our fashion footprint, in our day-to-day lives.


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