Sustainability is a word that is increasingly becoming more popular; what makes something sustainable? Is it the material and components it’s made of? Is it the longevity of its life in action? Is it the design of the product? Perhaps it is all of these, yet maybe it is only one. But is the future of fashion sustainable?
Influenced by trends that are ever changing, it can be hard to picture the future of fashion design being sustainable. Thrust into a high street of fast fashion retailers, it is often the more obscure and independent sellers that value and take into consideration the sustainability of the design of their products. Upon the application of sustainability it may lead to more ethical practices: such as the farming of organic cotton. One of the powerhouses of ethical fashion brands People Tree pride themselves in the way they farm, ensuring that the material used for the garments are fair trade.
One step forward for sustainability and one not so great step forward for ethics. You may also want to consider brands greenwashing, by definition it is: ‘the practice of making an unsubstantiated or misleading claim about the environmental benefits of a product, service, technology or company practice.’ Whilst a topic of conversation that may not be suitable for what I’m discussing in this post I think it is important to mention. Any step forward for sustainability for brands in the high street is great but it’s important to realise that they are still far from the level of transparency that ethical and sustainable brands are. If you wanted to find more information on the transparency of brands, Fashion Revolution have a superb guide on what is transparency, why it is needed and how to spot it. It’s well worth a read if you wanted to find out more about how brands are and how they should be transparent with their ethical and sustainable policies.
Whilst I am on a mission to stop buying from fast fashion brands, I did have a gift voucher for the store and I knew immediately that this skirt would be a new and very loved item in my wardrobe. Therefore I justify my purchase because I know the design of it will last years in my wardrobe, it can be worn with many different items in my wardrobe and is just all round a great new addition to my wardrobe. Two pieces of clothing that both have sustainability in mind but in different ways, one of them even combining ethics alongside it. They are little ways to increase the sustainability of your wardrobe. The photos were also taken by my friend Ellie who I managed to persuade to take pictures of me (although she loved it really) – taking pictures in public is becoming slightly easier… only slightly though!
So is the future of fashion sustainable?
It isn’t just where you buy your clothes from but with a design that will last for a long time and also how you dispose of your clothes. Do they go to charity or Depop, perhaps even make them into something new or DIY your old garments? I wasn’t to know your thoughts – do you think the future of fashion design is sustainable? Let me know in the comments!