Clothes – we all wear them and we all need them, they keep us descent, warm and cool. They talk and tell the world who we are and what our personalities are like without us having to open our mouths. But clothes also make a big impact and dent on the environment and the people who make them (plus our credit cards).
Today in our fast fashion world we have new styles and trend every few weeks, we have shops where you buy a shirt today and it’s replaced by something new next month. Yes that bargain $10 special you’ve got it awesome and you’re going to wear it all the time but will you really when there will always be another sale and another bargain to be had out there?
What went into making that item? Was the maker fairly treated, did they get a fair wage? Was the environment affected in anyway? How much water was used in the production method? What chemicals were used? Cotton is one of the most chemically treated plants out there.
But we all need clothes and we all have budgets, so what are we to do? We need to shop smart. Here are some of tricks I use:
I love me a good op-shop, it’s amazing what you can find there. My best purchase was a pair of vintage Dolce and Gabbana sunnies for only $25 with a tag still on them – so never worn. This is a great way of recycling as most of us don’t ever wear clothes till they are falling apart anymore so you can find new items still with tags on. Even if they have been worn you can get some stains out with a good soak and easily sew on a new button or fix a ripped seam. Always have a look as there’s always a hidden gem somewhere. Also if your friends wear the same size clothes as you, do a clothes swap or check out Round She Goes markets as well.
Upcycle what you already own – if you are bored with some of your current clothes cut them up and create them into something new and one of a kind (which is always a nice feeling). Pinterest is an upcyclers heaven filled with so many wonderful ideas.
If you don’t have a very big budget to buy organic or more environmentally friendly clothes watch out for sales. Blessed Earth is always having different sales on and you get a great bargain on something that you need. I got a pair of organic yoga pants for only $8 once.
Need verses Want
Really look at what you need as you’ll realise you don’t really need all that much clothing as you think you do. We are so programmed to want and want and want that we forget we only need so little.
Baptist World Aid
If you need certain clothing and you cannot find it secondhand or on sale at environmentally friendly place in your budget check out Baptist World Aid Behind the Barcode for stores that are trying to do a little better by the planet and the workers.
Shop your wardrobe
You’ll be surprised how many outfits you can get out of your wardrobe already just using a little bit of imagination. Instagram is full of so many different style challenges and you’ll start looking at your wardrobe so differently and start pairing up items you never would have thought about in the first place. I love partaking in these challenges most months and it’s really helped me see my clothes from a different perspective.
This one sounds drastic but it’s not really, most of the time you don’t really need that extra pair of shoes when you already have 20 others in the wardrobe. It goes back to need verses want, you only need so little to get by in life and yes it’s nice to have new things and there’s nothing wrong with that but really think before you buy and most of the time you don’t really need to buy.
Do you have any tips to share on how you shop for clothes?