‘Throw away’ thinking: 12 businesses redesigning fast fashion
Walking through the elegant Marais district in Paris a few weeks ago, I was in awe of how beautifully all the women dressed. Silk and linen practically dripped off them as they sauntered past, probably just en route to la boulangerie. These are clothes bought to wear over and over again.
This is in steep contrast to the rest of the world, where such a ‘throwaway’ mentality exists. Buy a cheap top, wear it out one night, then throw it away.
This does seem to be changing though. An awareness of sustainability and eco-fashion has made disposable buys seems irresponsible. Not something you’d boast about doing anymore. Retailers are embracing this wave of change too. A new action plan launched in February to make fashion more sustainable and less environmentally damaging.
“This action plan represents a concerted effort from the fashion industry, including top names in the high street and manufacturers to change the face of fashion. “Retailers have a big role to play in ensuring fashion is sustainable. We should all be able to walk into a shop and feel that the clothes we buy have been produced without damaging the environment or using poor labour practices, and that we will be able to reuse and recycle them when we no longer want them.”
The retailers taking part include:
- Marks and Spencer, Tesco and Sainsbury – all of these have signed up to a range of actions on increasing their ranges of Fair Trade and Organic, increasing take back and recovery of unwanted clothing and supporting fibres/fabrics that enable clothing recycling.
- In addition M&S and Tesco are supporting green clothing factories, improving animal welfare across their supply chain and increasing consumer awareness on washing at 30 degrees centigrade.
“Our businesses, our practices, no matter who we are, all have an effect on what we do and how we do it. As an industry, we are full of ideas, ingenuity and creativity. Fashion embodies possibility; this is a powerful tool. The building of an industry that can flourish, communicating positive change throughout supply chains and beyond, impacts radically on the societal and economic triggers that fashion is able to influence.”
However, with such a contradication between ‘sustainable’ and ‘fashion’, how will this translate to the fashion industry, which is ‘ based on a model of continual economic growth fuelled by ever-increasing consumption of resources?”
Could it be more impossible than spotting a Parisian in Primark? We will wait and see…
(Also read. Sustainable Fashion: Why Now? A conversation exploring issues, practices, and possibilities by Janet Hethorn, Connie Ulasewicz)
|Colwyn – The Hunting Dynasty’s Director of Planning & Strategy – has collated her thoughts on the trends of sustainability in fashion.
Download The Hunter Briefing: A Bird’s Eye View on Sustainability in Fashion PDF