Fashion, Climate Change & Ethics
In 2018, the UN reported that the fashion industry contributes to around 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions due to long supply chains and production methods.
In the same year, reports were filed with the Paris Agreement, the European Parliament and Canadian Parliament on public awareness of circular fashion - and while it has always been around, it's picking up more than ever. This is great news - but is it enough?
We dug further, to see if anyone had outlined the circular fashion movement in such a way that can be modeled and give real consumer strategies. Sweden's site Green Strategy cites the "Seven Forms of Sustainable Fashion", by Dr. Anna Brismar.
The article, which we recommend as informative reading, outlines the circular fashion model perfectly:
On Demand & Custom Made
Green & Clean
High Quality & Timeless Design
Fair & Ethical
Repair, Redesign & Upcycle
Rent, Lease & Swap
Second Hand & Vintage
Each item fits. Equal pieces of the pie. Every single one, when we as consumers act upon them, contributes to reduction in waste and raising standards for the fashion industry.
However - based on what we've read, this starts with quality.
Quality in fashion branches into two arenas. Design and manufacture.
In fashion, especially with new clothing, we all too often check a label to see who designed an item. We laud the designer's talent, notoriety and keen eye as a whole - agreed upon, by us, as to which designers are quality or noteworthy. This ranges from the red carpet, to the boardroom, to conversations on mass transit.
We check the materials, the make of a garment and every detail of what constitutes it. We can give quick response, when inquired on the attributes of this item when asked by a friend, lover or even stranger.
In all of this, the manufacturing process is often left out of the equation or forgotten all together.
It is clear that number four, above, is being left out of the equation in most purchasing by mass consumers.
Let's redefine the word - quality.
We at H.H. Wardrobe would define quality as inclusive of design, material, manufacture, manufacturing process and to the degree the the process contributes to or reduces the environmental impact and living conditions of where it was processed.
This starts from the beginning and has a ripple effect to where it arrives.
Waxing poetic here for a moment, Earth is a sphere for a reason. Much like our circular fashion model, we need to put importance on the impact that one item, person or process has on another - even at great distances. When you buy, buy ethically - it is the very start of the consumer's responsibility and power.
Inform yourself of a designer's practices. Investigate. Determine how the designer does business, where they manufacture. Find out how the manufacturer does business. Ethical treatment of employees and where they're sourcing their materials.
To assist with this, we recommend an app that we ourselves use in purchasing new clothing when the need arises - as rare as that is: GoodOnYou
The app is informative and really does push the sustainable movement forward by providing education at the time of purchase.
It is no surprise that, as large as the fashion industry is, there is a journalistic effort to convey facts to the public on the manufacturing process of garments. We just need to take a few minutes to look it over and search it out.
Note that we are a new company and searching out our own answers as well at this time, always trying to discover new ways to conserve and make the planet our number one concern - but at the same time, the people of this planet, are of a major concern for us as well. We all have to live here and by cleaning up our home we'll all be the better for it.
We are not affiliated with any of the companies or sites within our links above, but we commend and thank them for educating, enlightening and bringing new information to light.