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Saturday, February 21, 2015

My view on fast fashion


I had set myself up for 1 blog post today... but I could not resist this one... just because it goes well with the previous one AND one of my readers had asked my views on the subject of "fast-fashion".

Reading this today helped me put things back in perspective...

To be honest, I have known about "fast-fashion" for a while... and I thought it was convenient!  Being a shopaholic, I could not afford not doing fast-fashion.  Of course I would have my times of "not buying anything made in China"...  but they would not last very long.... and then I would justify myself with some lame arguments about sweat shops like: "well at least it gives them a job" , "they can feed their family"... etc... but deep down I knew it was wrong... and to be honest, I know that it is not easily avoidable on the kind of money I make now...  but I know people who've been doing without for a while so I must be able to give it a fair try too!

After reading a little more extensively about the subject, 2 things really repel me about fast-fashion: 

1) the workers/slaves conditions

2) damages made to the environment

and not in the same extent, but to some degree, the fact that most people dress the same as everyone else because this is what is presented to us!

1) Workers/Slaves conditions.
You may think slavery has been abolished but it has not!  In fact, the clothing industry is where the most workers are working in really really bad conditions... for very very tiny amount of money and very long extensive hours... and where there is more slaves then ever!  Actually, because of that industry, it is believe that there is more slaves on this planer now then ever before! Can you imagine???

2) Damages made to the environment.
Most clothes are made of cotton or do contain some.  As a result of this, we need to grow more cotton than this planet can handle!  It's a good thing (not) that we have Monsanto because not only are they messing up our food/planet but are also messing up your 10$ cotton t-shirt! GMO cotton is grown practically everywhere and it comes with recommended pesticides my Monsanto to insure proper growth!  Unfortunately, what it does not come with is any precautions that should be use with those pesticides or while harvesting the cotton...  nor does it come with an extensive study of the damages GMO crops may have for our future.
All those pesticides do contaminate water and soil where our food is grown.... because earth, like water, does not stand still...  it moves... with all the pollutants in it!
And I could go on and on about this one...

Because we can now take a trend from the runaway and have it in regular popular stores in well under 2 weeks... for minimum dollars...  because most of the clothes will go from store to land field in 1 year... one year only (if they would last longer then that, there would be no money for those rich people)... because we are being selfish about what we look like...  people, in developing countries, are dying just for us to get this latest trend at the cheapest price possible!  Does that make any sense to you???  it doesn't to me...

With every purchase we make we have power... power to say no to some things and yes to others...

I understand that not all of us, not even me, can afford 120$ organic sustainable jeans....  I get that!  I am very money conscious now...  but I also know that there is a line we can draw and habits we can take to minimize the damages to the environment AND take better care of those sweat shop workers... Maybe if I buy 1 pair of jeans every 5 years or more, it makes more sense to pay them 120$... who needs to buy 5-6 pairs of jeans a year???

Here's what I am planning to do:

1) Keep the clothes I have as much as I can - mend, fix, modify as need be but not discard them until there are no other options.
2) If I really no longer love something, give it to a friends, bring it to a second hand store.... no longer send my clothes to land field.
3) Budget a tiny amount of money towards further clothes purchase - this way, I can buy sustainable clothes when I really need something
4) Buy as much organic cotton and hemp as I can
5) Find local thrift stores
6) Find on-line store that are in Canada and supply sustainable organic clothes made in Canada where I live (you could do the same for the country you currently live in)

This way, I will feel comfortable with where my dollar goes.... happy in my clothes... and more unique! It will require that I use my creativity...  nothing wrong with that!

I am not saying I will never ever again buy American Eagle outfitters, Garage, Old Navy or H&M... but if I do, I will make sure it will be something I will wear for years...  and because I no longer buy so much clothes, the likely hood of myself buying from there is rather very low...

This is how I slowly want to change my consumerism behavior with clothes...  small step I know... but look at how far small steps with food brought me... probably will do the same with clothes!  It will not be too much destabilizing that I cannot sustain it... It will be right at the edge of my comfort zone and by pushing the comfort zone further and further away I will grow in that direction too.

What do you guys think about that?
Where do you shop?
Which changes do you wish to make?


1 comment:

  1. HI Nathalie.
    I've been spending the past hour on your blog (at least) and I'm SO happy I found you. you give so much inspiration, really.
    take good care or yourself :)