Fashion + Throw-away Culture

In March 2020, we emphasised the increasing issue of throw-away culture, to identify how, when and why clothes seemed to become 'disposable' and what urgent action must happen to change this.

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“The equivalent of one garbage truck of textiles is landfilled or burned every second, while less than 1% of clothing is recycled into new clothes”.

 

Global domination of e-retail giants like ASOS and Missguided and anytime, anyplace shopping accessibility from our smartphones, has resulted in a dramatic transformation in the relationship between us and our wardrobes. According to Fashion Network, 60% of shoppers have no interest in long-lasting clothing.

 

Long-lasting, investment staples have been replaced by cheap, ‘disposable’, and micro-trend-led pieces, which are usually already out of trend by the time they're in our wardrobes. Our desire to keep up with fashion newness means that in 2018, Britons binned clothes worth £12.5 billion last year as the rise of “throwaway” fashion led to 300,000 tonnes of textiles ending up in landfill. 

 

But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are incredible enterprises, charities and even brands working hard to tackle the throw-away crisis. But where does the accountability lie? Should brands be doing more? Are consumers just greedy? Can we ever throw-away the throw-away culture?