So, you’ve made the decision to switch from fast fashion to sustainable fashion. AMAZING! But how do you build a sustainable wardrobe? I think a lot of us feel the need to immediately run to our closets and dispose of all our unsustainable fashion and start fresh. Not only is this really expensive but also incredibly wasteful! Keep reading to learn why!
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5 Ways to Build a Sustainable Wardrobe
1. Wear the clothes you have
I’ll let you in on a secret, if you never repurchase another piece of clothing, your wardrobe will be the most sustainable in the world. Whether or not you have a closet stuffed to the brim with fast fashion, you already own them. And by wearing them and re-wearing them, you’re performing a silent act of activism. Not only are you keeping these items in use longer and preventing them from ending up in a landfill but you’re also not purchasing anything new – ethically made or not.
And while buying ethically is better than buying fast fashion, shopping creates demand for a product that uses up resources. All the clothes in your closet have already used up their resources to be made and won’t cost anything extra.
2. Shop Second hand
Similar to wearing the clothes in your closet, second hand clothing also already exists! And by shopping second hand you’re preventing these items from going to the landfill without creating demand for anything new. Plus it’s a very inexpensive way to shop sustainably.
3. Buy fewer items
We’ve really been conditioned to think that we always need to next new and trendy items. That’s how fast fashion is still thriving. But personally, I used to buy the next trendy thing and it would sit in the back of my closet because it wasn’t my style. Most of us have this problem where we have a closet FULL of clothing but we really only wear the same 5 – 10 pieces over and over again.
So it stands to reason that we could actually do better by buying less. We don’t need it, we won’t miss it and we’ll save a lot of money and space and stress when getting dressed in the morning.
4. Invest in pieces
I know we typically buy cheaper items so that we can buy more of them, but what if we invested in more “expensive” pieces that would last longer? And that doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be ethical, in fact, we can shop fast fashion sustainably when we slow our rate of consumption.
While we as consumers have so much power just in what we choose to buy, we can’t expect to dismantle the fast fashion model overnight. It’s dangerous because it’s fast. So when we take the time to actually invest in pieces, we’re not overconsuming and we’re leaving with an item that will last longer and therefore shopping less entirely.
5. Shop from sustainable brands
If you’re able, shop from sustainable and ethical brands. It’s not always in everyone’s price range and that’s ok. The other 4 ways are amazing at building a sustainable wardrobe. I am by no means wealthy and what’s worked for me is putting a small amount away each month and saving up for pieces I know I’ll love and will fit in my wardrobe perfectly. When we can start to see clothing as an investment instead of a trend, we’re on the right track. Here are some of my favourite sustainable brands:
I hope this post helped give you a few tips on how to build a sustainable wardrobe. We tend to overthink things, but it doesn’t have to be hard. It can be as simple as wearing the clothes we own.
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