As a slow fashion advocate, on a continuous exploration for the prettiest, fashionable and contemporary pieces of sustainable fashion brands I often got bombed with the question ‘what is sustainable fashion?!’ Have you got a minute?! This question is so big. Let’s start small, with my approach towards a sustainable wardrobe.
But first, allow me to do some framing; there is no such thing as sustainable fashion. There will always be pollution, extraction of precious resources from earth and emissions caused by transportation. Our reality is this realm of consumption - we are all sucked into the belief that we need to shop for new clothes on a regular base. This is not true, but it’s our belief. We worship the brands. We live up to the trends. And honestly it is pretty, fucking nice to be able to express our moods, send out signals and get creative on a daily base simply by getting dressed. A hell of a fun belief!
Yet, I am all sucked into the prettiness of the fashion industry - again. Back to the facts: Sustainable fashion is non existing. In the end there are only more responsible options than the status quo. Better choices.
Taking this as a base point, here is my answer to the question 'what is sustainable fashion?
Shortly said: It’s fashion that’s polite for the cosmos. You. Me. And all other living beings.
Simply put in a famous quote: “Buy less. Choose well. Make it last.” Thank you Vivienne Westwood.
This quote is my mantra. Over the last 9 years – in my quest towards a sustainable wardrobe - I challenged myself to buy as little as possible. I even bought nothing for a while. And this brought me a surprisingly good, versatile and timeless wardrobe. To get there I have some tricks op my sleeves:
Pieces in my wardrobe are:
There for ages – I still wear my pin striped wool H&M suit which I bought 20 years ago (when I was 17 and H&M was still making incredibly good quality pieces). Same goes for these Aesics in the first picture below. There might be times when I store things for a while, but good quality makes it last. Buying things I love (beyond the trend) makes me keep it.
Used to be from my grandmother - about every silk blouse in my closet and many coats used to be hers.
“Stolen”/gifted from my mother (in law)’s jewelry box. Which often were gifted by their mothers (in law). Nothing beats family jewelry.
Confiscated from my boyfriend. Choosing someone that matches your own length and size comes highly recommended ;-)
Something “new” is either second hand, thrifted or swapped. This goes up for about 60% of my wardrobe.
Only last – definitely not least - I buy something new from a brand which is made socially and environmental conscious. Obviously chosen out of love with a conviction to make them last in my wardrobe long enough - so I can pass them on to my granddaughter one day.
Here are some of my sustainable OOTDs. Want more? Check @thecosmospolite on Instagram