A guide to sustainable fashion

a guide to sustainable fashion juliette c

 

Today, we are more aware than ever before, about growing environmental issues and the impact of fashion on the planet. If you read our earlier post on slow fashion, you’ll get an idea of the alarming statistics and detrimental environmental impacts of the fashion industry. Sustainable fashion comes as the answer to becoming more eco-conscious and responsible. And since fashion is here to stay, there is an urgent need for an immediate shift towards sustainability and a mindful approach to what we choose to wear. 

Sustainable fashion refers to a responsible way in which clothes are created and consumed, protecting both the environment and those who produce the garments. Quite simply, it is fashion that is environmentally friendly and produced ethically. As someone who supports sustainable fashion, you would care about the answers to these questions about your clothes:

– What is the fabric used to make it? 

– Can it be naturally degraded without polluting the environment?

– How can I reuse this piece of clothing in an environmentally acceptable way?

– Can it be recycled to create something new?

– How is my piece of clothing manufactured?

– Who made my clothes?

Sustainable fashion needs to become more than a buzzword; we need to make it a way of life. We can start by creating a sustainable wardrobe. And though daunting, it is entirely doable. Here’s a guide to sustainable fashion and a few tips on creating a sustainable wardrobe:

  1. Stay informed

Start with doing your homework, and begin with the brands you love. Check to see if the brand you buy from is aligned with your values. Social media offers the fastest path to communicating with brands and learning about them. Once you are clear on which brands are eco-conscious, you can shop from their collections. 

  1. Invest in versatile pieces

Limit your spending and choose clothes that you can style up or down in any season or occasion. Jeans, a classic white shirt, a timeless dress, tops that easily pair with skirts, shorts or pants, jackets and T-shirts are all versatile wardrobe essentials. Select conscious pieces for a sustainable wardrobe. 

  1. Choose quality over quantity

It’s tempting to shop the latest trends, but buying a few high-quality pieces rather than splurging on fast fashion will reduce your carbon footprint. Buy less, and buy better. Every time you select a garment, ask yourself if you will wear it at least 30 times. The 30 Wears Challenge was popularised by Livia Firth, the Co-Founder of the sustainability consultancy, Eco Age, and British environmental journalist Lucy Siegle. While it may not sound like a challenge to wear a garment 30 times, consider the fact that it would have to be of very good quality to be in wearable condition after 30 wears and washes, over several months. 

  1. Be open to renting and buying second-hand clothes

Yes, it’s exciting to shop for a new dress and there is probably some truth about retail therapy. However, it’s possible to feel the same high when you buy a beautiful second-hand dress or rent an elegant piece for a special occasion. You can also feel good about keeping the item away from a landfill and paying a fraction of what a new dress would cost. 

  1. Donate

We’ve all been there – stashing pieces that we think we will wear someday, and yet never do! Maybe we could donate the clothes that simply fill our wardrobe spaces without ever being used, to charities looking for used clothes. And perhaps every time we buy a new piece, we could also donate one. 

  1. Check for harmful chemicals

A few chemicals that are used to treat clothes can pollute water bodies and put garment workers at risk. Make sure to check for the MADE IN GREEN by OEKO-TEX and Bluesign certifications which specify requirements for chemicals used during the manufacturing process. Both ensure that the product has been made within strict, environmentally-friendly criteria.  

  1. Know your fabrics

Different fabrics affect the environment differently, and it pays to know which ones have a lower impact on our planet. It’s a good idea to avoid synthetics such as polyester which take years to degrade. Sustainable options would include eco-friendly fabrics such as organic cotton and linen. You can read our article about sustainable fabrics to know more about them. 

  1. Care for your clothes

Ensure that your clothes last as long as possible by storing them well, not over-washing them and repairing them instead of throwing them. This goes a long way in lowering the environmental footprint of your clothes and making sure that they don’t end up in a landfill after just a few wears. 

For the fashion industry to become more sustainable in general, every person involved, right from creating it to supplying it to buying it, must recognise the impact on our planet and choose to act responsibly. Consumers, on their part, could avoid buying from brands which do not regard the environment kindly, and consider paying that little bit more for those that do. Brands, on the other hand, will have to create their offerings around environmental values that align with their target audience, following a greener, more environmentally-friendly business practice and avoiding greenwashing at all costs. 

Eventually, sustainable fashion is all about values. It is up to us to decide how we spend our money and how we care for the clothes we already own. And it is up to us to be more mindful of the planet and practice responsible fashion. 

At JULIETTE C, we are proud to uphold sustainable fashion. We create limited collections of timeless pieces and champion slow fashion through natural fabrics and employ local, traditional techniques. We are mindful of wastage, control our stocks and use all the fabric we purchase. We even use our leftover fabrics to produce garments and accessories.

We strive to offer our customers the best value for their money and dress them in styles that they feel confident and beautiful in. If you would like to know more about the sustainable practices we use, do get in touch with us. 

You can also visit our website to discover our timeless French fashion for women.

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