"Buy less, but buy better" is a phrase that has been doing the rounds of the internet in the past few months, and a concept that we completely agree with.
A couple of generations ago, well made clothing was the norm and it was expected that any new clothing item would be made to last and often sewn by hand. However, this is no longer the case, with the majority of garments being made in overseas factories from inexpensive and poor-quality fabrics, with underpaid workers in the industry suffering mistreatment (weigo.org). As well as the price and standard of clothing decreasing, our volume of purchase is increasing at an alarming rate.
Many garments are purchased with the intention of only wearing the item a few times. In fact, a recent British study by Bernado's found that the average women's garment is worn only 7 times! But why? And what can we do to combat this problem, which is not only putting more waste into our landfill (an amazing article by Luz Claudio 'Waste Couture' goes into depth about this), but is also fuelling an industry that under-pays and mistreats its workers (weigo.org).
Eco-fashion advocate Livia Firth believes "...we need to buy clothes that we love. Clothes that will sustain our wardrobe for years to come" and we couldn't agree more. A tip she gives is to ask ourselves if we can commit to wearing a garment at least 30 times. If not, why not? If you can't commit to wearing an item this many times, then what is the point of purchasing it? Firth's insight begs us to stop and think about our fashion purchases.
In this throw-away society, where a t-shirt can cost less than lunch, we're becoming more detached from our possessions. Shopping has become a mindless impulse rather than a treat. Let's make shopping special again! By consuming fashion mindfully - by purchasing with real thought and intent, questioning the item's origins, quality and by questioning our own needs before purchasing, not only will we make more thoughtful and wise decisions, I also believe that we can rekindle the joy of finding 'the perfect piece'.
With sales galore, Spring fashion just around the corner (scary, I know) and marketing campaigns tempting us in, it is hard to stay strong, but I promise that if we all commit to buying less but buying better,we'll all be happier about our purchases and love our new clothes even more.