Thoughts: Clothing Waste

by - 09:17

This is sort of a different style of blog post for me as I don't normally write long chatty blog posts but its something I want to start doing more of and get your thoughts on different subjects too.

Something I have thought a lot about recently is clothing waste. Especially as there have been loads more campaigns about it recently from the like of Oxfam, Stella McCartney and Tesco. I feel like everyone is giving it a bit more thought. And I am trying to think about it more when I purchase clothes and trying to recycle more.

Some research from various campaigns to stop clothing waste showed that 350,000 tonnes of clothing worth £140m is binned annually. And so many pieces of clothing are brought but then not used which means a massive waste of money and the natural resources used to make clothing.

I especially want to try and encourage recycling through vintage clothing. Beyond retro is one brand that I really love and think their way of reducing waste and being more sustainable is really amazing. They have a really interesting blog post on their website all about how they manage to be so sustainable. It shows what they do with all the clothing they sort through. I thought I would go through some of my favorite points from that article.

The start of the article talked about what Beyond Retro do with the clothes they don't put into stores:
"As you well know, we sift through a tidal wave of secondhand product to bring you an exhilarating pick 'n' mix of vibrant vintage fashion. But what about the stuff that's just not vintage enough? Only 1 in 1,000 items sorted actually makes it to our vintage department. Beyond Retro Label was launched as our answer to the other 999. After all, we're hoarders at heart - and we like to dig deep. This growing line of apparel and accessories takes our mission of recycling clothing one step further, by allowing us to reclaim and reuse a larger portion of the world's secondhand product."

They then went onto to talk about their well loved label products - "How does it work?
We set aside an extra 120,000 pieces per year that can't be sold as vintage, and brainstorm new ways to cut and reconstruct exciting new fashion. Sounds complicated? It is: you can't always get what you want. So we work around seams and set our pattern pieces sideways to achieve a range of savvy styles for both Ladies & Gents. From simple "nip & tuck" pieces like cut-off shorts and shortened dresses, to fully-reconstructed bags and jackets, our Beyond Retro Label has something for everyone."

I totally love all beyond retro's label products as you are still getting a piece of something vintage and also it feels like you've got something really unique. Their work with what would be unused pieces of clothing into something new and exciting, inspires me to do more with items of clothing that I don't wear in the current state they are in so that they are totally recycled and nothing gets wasted.

This then brings me onto chatting a bit about buying secondhand. I would say that about 80% of my wardrobe is secondhand. I buy most of my things from charity shops, carboot sales and vintage fairs. Secondhand shopping is definitely becoming more popular now as I think most people can see how many gems you can pick up secondhand and for a fraction of the highstreet price. This again is a great way to help stop as much clothing waste as everything can just go round in big cycle. You can donate things you don't wear to charity shops and then buy things from secondhand places and it just carries on. This is how I love to pick up new things for my wardrobe and I know it's not everyone's idea of shopping but there are so many ways to stop clothing being wasted! 

I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject in the comments. What do you do to stop clothing waste? And where do you pick up secondhand clothing? Share your thoughts down below, I'd love to see what you think.

Daisy x  

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