In recent years the concept of a sustainable lifestyle has become increasingly important, as we start implementing several eco-friendly practices in different aspects of our lives, one of them being fashion. However, when we think of fashion or being stylish in general, we don’t think the word sustainability would go hand in hand with it. When the word fashion comes up, we often think of fast fashion clothing brands such as Shein, Boohoo, Pretty little things or fashion trends that are shown all over social media for example clothing hauls which promote overconsumption. Although fashion has a bad reputation it also has a lot of potential to be sustainable. This could be achieved through consciously making more sustainable choices. In this article, we will explore tips to help you stay stylish and sustainable, allowing you to express yourself freely while making a positive change in the fashion world.
1. Building a Capsule Wardrobe
What is a capsule wardrobe? A capsule wardrobe is a term people use to describe a collection of clothing composed of easily interchangeable items designed to maximise the number of outfits that you can create. By doing this, you will decrease your need for excessive shopping and help you to create a wardrobe with fewer but more versatile items. To create a capsule wardrobe, you could try decluttering your wardrobe, consider donating clothes that no longer fit you, and throw away garments that are damaged beyond repair. Things that you should keep in mind when choosing garments for your capsule closet are garment quality and versatility. It is also important to think about how easy it is to maintain and clean a garment you are keeping.
2. Embrace Slow Fashion
The concept of "slow fashion" encourages a more deliberate approach to clothing purchases. Instead of chasing fleeting trends, invest in timeless pieces made with quality craftsmanship. Based on an article by caused artist, there are key characteristics of slow fashion, which are ethical production, quality over quantity, local production, minimalism, upcycling, and recycling. It could be quite intimidating for people to suddenly switch gears. So here are some of the things to keep in mind when you’re out shopping: Firstly, I recommend doing a little research on sustainable brands in your area. An example of a sustainable brand in the UK is Rejean, which is based in the East End of Glasgow. This brand is dedicated to creating new garments from reclaimed materials. Second, keep in mind that choosing a garment with good quality could go a long way towards increasing the lifespan of the garment. Lastly, try looking for a certification that proves the company has implemented fair trade practices. This can easily be found on the company's website. Unfortunately, slow fashion clothing is often more expensive than its fast fashion counterpart; however, remember that you are paying for a good-quality garment that is sustainable and ethically produced.
3. DIY Your Fit
One of the most obvious ways to incorporate sustainability into your style is by making your own garments. There are a lot of benefits that come from making your own clothes. The most obvious one is customization. By making your own garments, you have free reign over how the garment looks, so you can make it as wild as you want or as simple as you want, and your design will be one of a kind because you made it yourself. Another benefit of this is that you also have control over the materials of your garments. Because of this, you could choose eco-friendly fabrics, such as organic cotton or linen, and repurpose old garments or fabrics, reducing waste and minimising your environmental impact. Lastly, learning to sew and make your own garments is an important skill that promotes independence and creativity. It empowers you to repair, alter, and upcycle garments, extending their lifespan. I know it could be daunting to create your own garment, so I find it helpful to start with something small. For example, joining a local mending club to learn skills to start small upcycling projects or buying a pattern for a garment you like If you are a visual learner, watching YouTube videos on how to make your own garment could be a great help on your DIY journey.
4. Pre-loved Treasures
Buying pre-owned garments from your local thrift stores, consignment shops, and vintage boutiques could be a good alternative to buying new clothes. By thrifting, you are not only reducing clothing waste, but you are also able to find one-of-a-kind pieces that add character to your style. Give new life to pre-owned clothes while supporting local businesses and reducing your carbon footprint.
Being stylish and sustainable are not mutually exclusive. By following these tips, you can create a wardrobe that reflects your style while minimising your impact on the environment. Remember, small choices make a big difference, and by embracing sustainable fashion practices, you can play an active role in creating a more eco-friendly and stylish future.