How many times have you found yourself staring at your wardrobe and muttering to yourself that you have nothing to wear?
Even with a wardrobe full of clothes this situation is quite relatable to most of us. Our shopping behaviour has undergone a drastic change in the recent years and fast-fashion has become an increasingly common trend. The average consumer today buys 60 percent more pieces of clothing than what he did 15 years ago.
Fashion continues to leave a gigantic impact on the environment – with increased carbon emissions, water usage and textile waste.
It’s about time we adopt ethical ways to consume fashion for the betterment of our environment. The scenario will change only when each one of us makes a conscious effort to choose & sustain our wardrobes.
Here are the 7 Rs of fashion to help you reduce your fashion footprint:
Increasing the usage of your clothing means reducing the consumption of natural resources used to produce new ones. Wear the same garments more creatively to create different looks, thereby maximising their usage. If you absolutely must, then try to shop for value instead of cost. Invest in pieces that are more versatile and can be worn through seasons.
There’s absolutely no shame in repeating an outfit. Even celebrities do it all the time. Use your creativity to form different looks and challenge yourself to create as many looks as possible using items from your wardrobe. Another great way is to shop from thrift stores and garage sales which sell pre-loved clothing – they house some treasures if you got the will to hunt. There’s also a way to get great old-new outfits for free! We’re talking about hand-me-downs from siblings and cousins.
Any piece of clothing that has been completely worn out or something that no longer fits must be consciously disposed off. The idea is to recycle these pieces in a fashion that they can be repurposed into something useful for us rather than adding to the landfills. Let’s start with being cautious about our shopping choices- look for garments made from recycled materials and ocean plastic waste.
Own something that you no longer need? Put on your thinking cap and keep finding newer ways to repurpose it. One important way to reduce our fashion footprint is by maximizing the usage of any item of clothing that we own. For example, a pair of jeans could be turned in to a tote bag; an old-t-shirt could be turned in to a pillow case; a loose fitting shirt could be turned in to a brand new dress with a few stitches. Even using an old piece of clothing as a rug instead of buying a new rug is the way to go.
“A stitch in time saves nine.” This proverb in sustainable fashion terms means repairing your items of clothing so you can wear your favourite pieces for many more years. A little DIY and a bit of creativity are all that you need to save your precious garments. If you can’t do it yourself, going to your neighbourhood tailor is always an option.
This ‘R’ is quite similar to REUSE but it’s to draw attention to the fact that many times we have pieces of clothing that are lying around in our closet- too good/new to give away or saved up for special occasions. What if we rented them out? A number of online stores have already put this into a business model- be it for maternity shoots, pre-wedding shoots or for special functions such as weddings, cocktail parties or dandiya. It’s a smart decision to rent an outfit over buying one especially when there are only a few occasions to wear it.
Some times even after shopping with all environmentally friendly norms in mind, the fabric begins to fade or shrink after a few washes. This places us back to where we began. Hence, it is best to do our homework on the brands and understand their labels before we go shopping.
Open the doors to saving the environment by reducing your fashion footprint. Every piece of clothing counts.
Share with us some more creative ways through which you can adopt sustainable fashion. Here is our initiative in- Mi wardrobe is Su wardrobe, where you can shop from a celebrity’s personal closet. Thereby contributing towards the welfare of the environment.
This month, the one & only Sonakshi Sinha is sharing her closet with us. Take a look – saltscout.com/MiSu/Sonakshi
(Source: UN Environment; World Wild Life; Canopy)