I’ve been thinking a lot about fast fashion recently, and about how our need to stay on-trend and wearing the latest fashion means that we are constantly stuck in a cycle of buy – wear once – buy – wear once – buy – wear once, repeat. And there are so many environmental and humanitarian repercussions to this.
Slow fashion and sustainable awareness blog Into The Eco has recently spoken about their “30 Wears Challenge” which encourages us to wear items of clothing at least 30 times before getting rid or turning our backs on them.
So, it’s not that we need to stop buying brand new clothes altogether, but we should most definitely reduce the rate at which we do buy them. In order to do this, we need to make more conscious choices when clothes shopping, and being practical when confronting what we want, what we really want, and what we need.
This pair monochrome flares from Topshop cost me £25 (they’re available in Tall and Petite, too!) and I have already worn them at least 15 times since buying them a couple of months back. The habit we need to develop, in my opinion, is thinking of at least 5 different outfits we can wear something with – which involves only items that we already own. It’s not good buying something that then means we have to buy 2 or 3 more things, unless we really, really, want or need that something.
My favourite way to do this is to imagine ways that I can dress something up or down. Most things go with a denim jacket and/or a leather jacket, so I always consider this first, because my go-to jacket is always my denim or (faux) leather jacket. After this… I consider the shoe situation. A trainer? A boot? A heel? These trousers, for me, look much better when I’m wearing a heel, but they also look okay when I wear them with my white sneakers or my cherry red Dr Martens. This makes them wearable whether I feel like dressing up or dressing down! So far, so good!
I also think about what colour palette works with this new item, and whether that colour palette is compatible with my existing wardrobe. I wear a lot of black, grey, blue, and pink. And what colours go with these flares? Black, grey, blue, and… well, any brightly toned colour! This also works for me, since I’m always chopping and changing between different funky hair colours. These trousers will go with pretty much any barnet I desire!
Other ways to be more conscious of your fashion footprint include shopping at charity shops and second hand stores, and using second-hand services like Depop and eBay. I love finding unique gems in small local stores that have long been forgotten about by someone from another generation! It makes your style much more independent and interesting, which is something I really care about – standing out from the crowd! And, on that note, let’s stop chasing the current trends like zombies and start thinking more! It will save you a lot of money in the long run, too.