It is by no means 'new' news that fast fashion is having a negative impact on the environment, contributing to significant landfill waste. Earlier this year the government released an interim report on the 'Sustainability of the Fashion Industry', which we discussed in a separate blog. In light of this, Oxfam have launched a new challenge to get shoppers to agree not to purchase any new clothes during September.
Will this work?
The cynic in me suspects people are not yet ready to give up following fast fashion.
During the wedding season, I was bemoaning the fact that I have only had two wears out of a dress when a fellow wedding guest pointed out that this was because of social media. Many people (myself included) do not want to be seen repeatedly in the same outfit. A First World problem. This inevitably leads to people buying more clothes and getting less wear out of them.
However, there is increasing evidence that second-hand clothes are having a renaissance with research by GlobalData indicating that the resale market has grown 21 times faster than the retail market over the past three years. Now if you are not a fan of mooching around charity shops, there are so many other options at your disposal. You can peruse the likes of eBay, Depop or Vinted or even rent out your own wardrobe.
Therefore, I need to silence the cynic in me and embrace the second-hand / sustainable market.
If you have an interest in sustainability, The Collective by Lewis Silkin are hosting an event tomorrow in London on 'Sustainable Luxury'.
Every week, 11 million items of clothing end up in landfill. Throwaway fashion is having a lasting effect on our planet, which is of course unsustainable. This is where #SecondHandSeptember comes in - a pledge that encourages you to say no to new clothes for the month.