When I say recycle your clothes by selling them or buying second-hand clothes, I don’t mean the ones you get from the fast-fashion retailers that sell relatively cheap and low-quality clothes. Yes, the rise of fast fashion has transformed the apparel industry, with fast fashion promoting a low quality/high turnover business model. Consequently, large retailers like H&M, Zara and Forever 21 are pressured into mass producing low-priced, and essentially low-quality, fashion to meet the needs of consumers.
So another way of reducing the environmental footprint of the fashion industry other than buying and selling second-hand, is to buy more sustainable clothing. Instead of buying cheaper, low-quality pieces of clothing at the large chain retailers, why not spend more on one piece of clothing and be guaranteed that it will last longer? As I mentioned in my previous blog post, if we could simply extend the lifecycle of our clothes by 9 months, we could potentially reduce the water footprint of our clothing by 30%! And if you can’t extend the lifecycle yourself? Sell it and let someone else do the job for you 🙂
Here’s a few Australian sustainable and ethical fashion brands to keep an eye out for:
KITX – acronym for Kindness, Integrity, Transparency and X (the future), KITX is an Australian ethical fashion brand that creates their products with ‘high frequency wear, superior quality and creative design while consciously sourcing materials that minimise harm to our planet’s precious resources’.
Rachael Cassar – Australian designer who creates amazing couture pieces loved and worn my many celebrities (including Rihanna, Tyra Banks, Ruby Rose and more!), from recycled materials. Cassar focuses on a process of deconstruction where she takes apart pre-loved pieces to produce luxurious eco designs.
Bhumi (means Mother Earth) – is a Australian fashion label which uses organic cotton, with a focus on making a ‘positive impact on our planet and the people on it, by inspiring people to make positive consumer choices’.
The Social Studio – A non-for-profit social enterprise that is dedicated to helping young and talented Australians with a refugee or migrant background. All their products are 100% designed and made in Australia, handcrafted to the highest quality and with a minimal environmental footprint.
Bhalo (Bengali for ‘good’) – An Australian ethical fashion label produced in rural Bangladesh that creates limited edition garments using natural hand woven textiles, printing and embroidery.
Pure Pod – An Australian ethical fashion label that uses a range of high quality, eco-friendly and sustainable biodegradable fibres including organic cotton, bamboo, hemp, soy, merino wool and silk, to create contemporary, stylish and ethical clothing with an urban influence.
Edition – A zero-waste Australian fashion label that works with sustainable fabrics using zero-waste pattern design techniques to produce unique and multifunctional garments.
Eva Cassis – All designs are ‘created in a conscious framework, handmade in Sydney, using only beautifully ethically sourced materials and luxury natural fibres, whilst adopting systems that effectively ensure there is minimum waste’.
Avila – An Australian made fashion label dedicated to using high quality antural fabris with eco-friendly and sustainable considerations.
So remember, shop ethically and don’t always just go for the cheap! And if you’re really running low on cash and desperately need a new outfit? Go to your nearest thrift shop!