Sustainable fashion: Slow Style vs. Fast Fashion
The boomers had it good. They popped the cork after a world war and grew up in the 60s and 70s, encouraged to take what they wanted. Then the 1980s came around. Reagan and Thatcher gave further reassurance; owning as much stuff as possible was proof that you were living your best life. The idea of sustainable fashion just didn’t exist, it didn’t need to.
Today, this point of view is easy enough to understand, but harder to tolerate. We can’t just do what we want anymore. Everything from recycling to food production, land and water use has to be carefully managed in order to reduce our carbon footprint and create a better future for our planet.
So, what’s fashion got to do with sustainability?
Fashion plays a very impactful part when it comes to our ecosystem. It shouldn’t be disposable or destined for a landfill three weeks after you tear the tag off. Fast fashion is still very much a thing.
How many times have you felt that awesome feeling when nabbing a bargain from a clothing retailer that churns out new styles every week? It feels like you’re the first to a gold rush. But this, unfortunately, is fast fashion: the low cost, high-manufacture model that’s all about selling as many clothes as possible. The worst bit? The clothing industry is responsible for about 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions, so that half price jacket from the clothes shop might be a nice deal for your wallet, but not for the environment.
What can we do to change fast fashion?
Instead, we want to introduce something else: ‘slow style’. It’s so much better for you, your wardrobe and the world around us.
Instead of hoovering up quick, cheap clothes like they’re going out of fashion – and most of them definitely will be, before you know it – it’s much better to treat a wardrobe with respect. To buy clothes you adore because they last, or because they’re stand out pieces that make you stand out. Timeless styles with fabric that won’t fall to pieces, degrade or discolour. Essentially, an outfit that takes a more careful, less replicable method of creation.
Ok, so what’s the best slow style material out there?
That’s an easy one: Leather. When we talk about slow style, we mean a fashion mainstay that doesn’t cut corners or scorch the earth. Leather clothes fit the bill. They take much longer to make and, on the whole, pay the people making them a lot more fairly. A decent leather jacket can last upwards of ten years– even longer if you take care of it.
Plus, you can pair it amazingly well with any vintage clothes – another good way of dressing more sustainably. We might as well make the most of what others leave behind. With a leather coat or trousers in the mix, shabby fashion can be as chic as you want it to be.
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Photo by Becca McHaffie on Unsplash