Another year is coming to an end, and as we prepare for a new chapter, we become thoughtful and motivated about the changes we can make to ensure 2019 will be a stellar year. Not just for ourselves, as individuals, but for the world at large. Needless to say, one of the main things we need to tackle to create a change for the better, is the way we treat our planet. There are many ways we can contribute to a healthier world, including the way we choose our clothes.
With many of us living on minimal wage and with families to feed, buying into fast-fashion is an attractive option. Ridiculously low prices allow even those on the lowest of budgets to follow the latest fashion trends by ways of major retail outlets focused on mass production. But at what cost? High carbon footprints, exploitative wages, an ever-increasing percentage of waste and unrealistic production schedules that leave workers exhausted, ill or worse.
If you really want to make a change in the new year, set yourself a challenge: avoid the fast fashion market and only buy into slow fashion instead. Here is a buyer’s guide to the best places for slow-shopping!
Flea Markets & Boot Fairs
Whether your local neighbourhood is more about the flea markets or the boot fairs, either way, these second-hand shopping experiences will make for the perfect introduction to slow fashion. There’s an art to rummaging through piles of second-hand clothes and nosing out stalls that might be selling just what you’re looking for, and once you master it, you won’t be able to get enough – weekend’s will become your designated shopping days and you’ll be forever on the hunt for the next cool market to visit. The best part? On a good day, you’ll be leaving with several tote bags full of goodies for less than ten dollars, whilst contributing to breaking the cycle of fast fashion.
Go Straight to the Source: Fashion Designers
Most of us never even consider the idea of approaching a fashion designer for a special commission directly – that’s only something celebrities can afford, right? Well, not exactly. True, you will be paying more for a handmade, tailored dress to fit your body perfectly, but think of it this way – would you rather pay a little bit more for a dress made from sustainable materials by an up-and-coming fashion designer, or less for three dresses made in a sweatshop with environmentally damaging materials, that will only last you for one season? It’s time to start changing the way we think about fashion!
First-Class Second-Hand Stores
Visiting a second-hand store is like going on a treasure hunt – you never know what you might find! Second-hand stores are vintage heaven and you’ll soon realize that most of your best fashion purchases stem from these magical little shops. There are different types of second-hand stores with differentiating prices – some specialize in luxury items that have only been worn for one season, so chances are you’ll be seeing higher price tags in these than your local charity shop. But even your local charity shop might be home to a practically new Louis Vuitton handbag – it never hurts to look!