Nobody is denying that ethical fashion isn’t complex. But consumers shouldn’t let themselves be overwhelmed. Here we provide six easy steps to making your wardrobe more ethical.
Fashion can be fair trade but still have a big carbon footprint. It can be organic but possibly made in a sweat shop. The issues around fashion are huge and can easily overwhelm the average consumer. But this shouldn’t be an excuse to do nothing.
If you can’t be perfect then just be more conscious. It can make a big difference and sends a message to High Street companies that people care about these issues.
If you’re not sure of how to start, here’s a six step guide to making your wardrobe more ethical.
Step one: have a clear out
Most of us have more clothing than we need or want, so start by clearing out the crap. Slow fashion consultant, Veronica Crespi from Rewardrobe , advises people to treat their wardrobes like a little boutiques where everything fits them. The stuff that you don’t want any more can be donated to organisations like Oxfam or sold on EBay or ASOS . Anything damaged or worn out can be upcycled into something new.
Step two: go swishing
Swishing is a great way to be ethical and have fun. The concept is simple – you bring some items of clothing you no longer want and swap them with someone else. Voila, you have a new outfit for hardly any cost or social and environmental impact. You can find a swish near you by visiting swishing.org . Alternatively organise your own with a group of friends.
Step three: find a good charity shop
Many people say ethical fashion is too expensive, but there’s little cheaper than charity shops. Of course some are better than others. Ms Wanda’s Wardrobe has a guide to some of the best charity shops .
Step five: start saving
Compared to Primark you will pay a more for ethical fashion. But in return you’ll get great quality and clothes that last. So why not save up and buy something amazing. After all that saving you’re guaranteed to love it more too.
Step six: make your voice heard
It’s not easy to stop shopping on the High Street. If you really can’t tear yourself away then carry on. That’s right, I said keep shopping at Top Shop. But just do one thing for me in return – each time you buy something follow up with an email, phone call or letter to the store. Ask them about how they ensure garment workers get a fair wage, protect children from slavery and reduce pollution and carbon emissions. If you’re not sure how to do this then join the Fashion Mob for tips and toolkits to make your voice heard.