(Spare a thought for those who labour tirelessly to bring you the most NOW fashion.)
The second anniversary of Rana Plaza passed a while ago and the story made me pause for a minute as I had done the first time I heard it. Ecofashion is, if you haven’t been paying attention, the new black, and if you aren’t already spending some thought on ethical clothing these days you’re pretty behind the times.
As a man I understand that our relationship with clothing is often less intimate, but like it or not we all have an important connection with our clothes. And it’s because we embrace these objects so deeply that we do need to think a bit more about where they come from.
(Angelo Igitego uses local fabrics and artisans to make these epic bow ties)
Having somehow survived hiking in Namibia for a week, I’ve taken a look at my own business and how to make it greener. More on this in future posts. In the meantime you should definitely start thinking about these 5 easy ways to endorse ecofashion. I mean, it is 2016 people…
There’s this place called the internet where you should really hang out! You can buy any item of clothing from anywhere in the world, get tips on what’s fabulous right now, AND see images of fashion designers hugging trees…all without putting on pants. Need sandles? A new shirt for a job interview where you’ll be rejected again? Option One is of course to put your pants on, go to the store(s), look at ugly clothes, and spend more than you wanted because you were so desperate to get the fuck out of there.
Or These 5 Ecofashion Tips
(Tom Cridland makes clothes to last, and offers a 30-year guarantee.)
#1. Start looking, especially online.
If you’re hooked on going to the shops (ie. you have a partner) it will literally take NO extra effort to look at the maker’s label in the garment and note what it says. You’ll be interested to see how quickly you start noticing which stores stock garments from which countries. If you’re strong enough you should of course be doing detailed research on every brand. I’m talking camera surveillance, infiltration as a low-level employee, sleeping with the CEO and the CFO at the same time! Do whatever it takes to know that your clothes are gluten free.
(Matt and Nat. Material and Nature are central to this completely vegan bag company, who use recycled plastic bottles for lining. This bag is also currently my most coveted fashion item.)
An intermediary step would also be:
#2. Hug a tailor
Yes this is self serving, but really just do it! Even if you only ever ask him to replace buttons for you, it’ll help your clothes last longer, which is really what you’re aiming to do. Taking care of our clothes is an easy way to reduce their environmental impact. Patch jeans, darn socks, do whatever it takes to outdo a gluten intolerant person.
(11.11. Mia Morikawa and Shani Himanshu make clothes from hand-spun Indian cotton, and work with local artisans.)
An easy way to help your clothes last longer is also (my absolute favorite):
#3. Wash less
A great deal of a garment’s impact on the environment comes through washing. Of course you need to wash your clothes shmucks. But do so less regularly (come on, we all do it anyway) and use organic detergent (also available on the internet).
(Katcha Bilek makes the most INSANELY awesome stuff from recycled tiers and seat belts)
You’ll not only save on your water account, but basically be a billionaire when you also:
Do I need to justify this one?
#5. Be Vivienne Westwood
Your new mantra is now:
Consume Less, Choose Wisely, Make it Last
Here’s a good article on some of the brands from this post, check it out! You can also get the latest ethical fashion down-low at this website (ecofashionworld), and shop local (if you’re a cool South African) ethical fabric here.
Oh you’re busy? Are you wearing clothes right now (please don’t answer that)? Then just go read the article already! PUNK!!