Tuesday 20 July 2021

Breaking Up with Fast Fashion

Shopping for clothing used to be done a couple times a year. Generally, it was for replacing essentials and perhaps picking up a new piece or two. But with the emergence of fast fashion retailers, fashion became more accessible. New trends used to emerge a couple times a year, but these days it feels things change every month. 

Fast fashion brands mass produce runway looks and sell them for cheap. Essentially fast fashion floods the market with cheaply produced clothing that is financially accessible to consumers. Unfortunately, this results in a huge amount of waste because the garments soon find their way to the landfill. Also, cheap fabrics, often plastic-based, shed microplastic fibres with each wash; therefore, polluting our waterways and oceans. 

For a time I was feeling pressured to dress like other influencers. To remain on top of fashion trends. The only way to do so was to buy fast fashion, but those pieces were terrible quality made with awful fabric. 

I forgot what fashion really is meant to be about. Fashion is about expressing our own individuality. I should dress for myself in what makes me happy! Also, if I love a dress or style, why should I not continue to wear it, even if it was so three seasons ago! 

Over the past couple of years, I have made conscious changes to my fashion habits. I am actively trying to purchase clothing made from natural textiles:

• Cotton • Linen • Wool • Cashmere • Silk • Bamboo • Hemp • Tencel • 

Sustainable fashion brands are creating gorgeous pieces that are ethically produced. The best part, these brands are transparent and paying their employees a living wage. Many of these companies are producing their clothing in North America which is exciting! The downside is the price tag. Quality, sustainability, ethics do not come cheap. The clothing is definitely more expensive. A dress on average will run at a minimum $100; however, I cherish those pieces. I only purchase what I truly love because I am spending more money on each item. 

There are several boutiques in Vancouver that are stocking amazing companies. I am currently obsessed with Gatley on Commercial Drive! The Hills Dry Goods and Hills of Kerrisdale have been two of my favourites since high school. I just ordered a stunning new dress from A Bronze Age and should be arriving any day now. I have found some amazing finds at Amelia Lee in Victoria, BC. Believe it or not, Patagonia and Levi's have been actively working towards becoming more sustainable brands. 


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