Remember how the red carpet looks on award shows, pricey weddings and festive outfits or bold new collections of celebrated designers stare back at us smugly from page 3 and glossy magazines? They indulge us, titillate our senses and make us crave that perfect everything. Call me boring but what interests me more is what happens to these beautiful clothes after their purpose is served. They’re exclusive and often customised, can’t be repeated, and aren’t always wearable. Fashion trends then become a liability while sustainable fashion seems practical and wise, doesn’t it?
Sustainable fashion aims at making improvements in the fashion world that will have social, economic, ethical, and, most importantly, environmental benefits. At the macro-level, it includes better production methods, increasing the life and value of garments, and reducing waste. However, at the micro-level, the onus of following ecofriendly, feasible practices lies on ‘green consumers’ like us. What changes can we inculcate in our lifestyle to make it happen?
- Go Vintage! ~ Our mother’s (and now mother-in-law’s) wardrobe is like Alibaba ki gufa for us, isn’t it? From exquisite sarees and gorgeous salwar suits to vintage jewellery and accessories, there’s precious little magic left to our imagination there. Raid (or borrow, better) their silks and create a wonderful ensemble to shine at your office or kitty parties.
- Swapping fashion is fun ~ Let’s accept it, we’ve all done this. T-shirts, kurtis, dupattas, scarves etc are probably the most common swapping items. Clothes swapping with friends, cousins, or even neighbours is a great way to flaunt variety without burning a hole in your pocket. It saves time, space and gives a good bonding opportunity as well.
- Make your own fusion wear ~ Sustainable fashion gets an interesting twist with fusion or mix and match fashion trends. Juttis and cholis with a pair of jeans, long skirts with denim tops, or sarees paired with fitted or singlet tops are a few of them. The sky is the limit. Go wild with your choices; the crazier, the better!
- Hand-me-downs are good ~ Often labelled as ‘middle-class’, hand-me-downs are a practical and affordable option. Weight gain or loss, change in preferences, growing out of them or boredom are simple reasons to give away or accept perfectly good clothes. It’s nothing to be offended or embarrassed about. Give it a thought.
- Opt for natural, breathable fabrics ~ Sometimes we blindly follow fashion trends and invest in fabrics that don’t suit the climate we live in. Natural fibers like cotton, jute, khadi, bamboo, hemp, etc are eco-friendly as well as right for Indian weather. They’re comfortable, hassle-free, easily washable, and have a long life. Designers have made sustainable fashion incredibly fashionable with them too!
- Zip that wallet ~ Although the real experience has taken a beating for a year and a half now, the guilty pleasure remains unchanged. Thanks to online shopping, we’re scrolling and buying a lot more than we need. This merely adds to the existing pile and leads to anxiety issues. Not to mention, most of it lies unworn. Let’s decide to do 20 pushups every time the mood strikes instead, shall we?
- Downsize and Donate ~ Sustainable fashion is about better consumption of available resources as well. Downsizing your wardrobe every few months helps in mental and literal declutter. Separate the clothes you won’t need and donate them to your help or charities to find better use of them. Happiness truly lies in giving.
- Repeat, Reuse and Recycle ~ Celebrities get scoffed at for repeating their dresses but, thankfully, we’re spared from that judgement. By all means, repeat and reuse your favourite clothes while they’re still in good condition. Use your imagination and recycle them; like cutting your old jeans in half, making a blouse from an old dupatta, or simply draping a saree differently. Everything works.
Sustainable fashion is a small but effective means to do our bit for the environment. With eco-friendly lifestyle changes and selecting and supporting environment-friendly brands and practices, we will surely make the world a better place. That isn’t a lot to do for a noble cause, right?
This post is part of #CauseAChatter with Blogchatter
This post is a part of Blogchatter Half Marathon
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