With 2018 now being so last year, January is notorious for being the time to reflect and set goals and resolutions for the year ahead.
For us, we're focused on our style resolutions, making a conscious effort to shop with purpose, carefully considering each and every item we decide to bring into our homes and wardrobes, and thus what makes up our personal style.
Written by Kaija Love
Leave a smaller carbon footprint
The clothes we wear tell a bigger story, one that extends far beyond our personal narratives. What you once may have seen as a personal choice may have wider ramifications than you may think. There’s no question that we’re buying much more than we need. To put a figure on it, according to Greenpeace we are consuming an average of 60% more than we did in the year 2000 and disposing of it 50% quicker.
The good news is, it’s not too late to make a difference. All it takes is a bit of focus-shifting and habit- changing. Take care of the little things, and the big things will fall into place - a phrase I’m sure you’ve all heard a few hundred times in your lives. But it’s not often we stop to critically analyse its meaning. Oftentimes it is the routines and habits that make up our daily routines that have the greatest potential to drive change. You may be asking yourself, “But what exactly can I do to change?”.
There’s a lot we can do.
It’s all about quality over quantity. It’s about investing in a few special pieces season to season, pieces you will get wear out of without completely wearing them out. Look for brands who distinguish themselves through their sustainable, superior fabrics. In turn, you can alleviate the guilt from your purchases, knowing you are supporting a slow-fashion future, and leaving a smaller carbon footprint.
Know where the garments are being made
A recent article by Man Repeller’s Leandra Medine reveals the importance of knowing where your garments come from, and why one would pay $260 for a blouse. She writes - “That I never questioned why it is so rare to encounter such explanations is probably a function of having accepted that I’m not supposed to know where my stuff comes from, or how it is made – just that I can have it”. She concludes this statement by questioning why we can’t have both, and she’s right. With the right research, the power truly is in the consumer's hands.
Being a conscious consumer means putting thought and careful consideration into every piece you buy. Taking note of where your garments come from plays a crucial role in reducing your carbon footprint. At the UNDONE, most of our brands are designed and made in Australia and New Zealand. Supporting local businesses and the local supply chain can reduce your carbon footprint significantly. Take some time before you shop to read the ‘about’ section on a brand’s site. You’ll be surprised how much you can learn in a couple of minutes.
Support slow fashion
Where fashion and the environment intertwine, our ‘less is more’ ethos can offer a few pearls of wisdom. Though, these pearls can be difficult to scour as they become lost in the rough and tumble of the fast-fashion cycle. How can you beat affordability and accessibility? It sounds like a win, win for everyone. But what many of us may not consider is how these clothes can be produced as rapidly as they are, and for the low-price tag that they carry.
During a time where our desire for instant gratification is soaring, the fast-fashion industry can be easily overlooked as one of the primary polluters across the globe. And, whilst we may experience that momentary ‘high’ after scoring a new pair of $40 shoes, the other side of the production line is not so glamorous. Though luxury may come at a high price, the price of fast-fashion is unfortunately much higher. Following fast-fashion trends can be like putting your blinders on. By focusing only on what’s visible right in front of you, you can ignore or forget about the wider ramifications of mass production.
Commit to buying less and shift your focus to high-quality craftsmanship and fabrics. Ditch the fast- fashion trends and invest in pieces that will stand the test of time. In this way, not only can you extend the life of your garments, but doing so will make them easier and more enticing for others if you decide to re-sell. On average, about 2.5 billion pounds (or 1.1 billion kg) of textiles are revived from landfill via re-sale.
Check and educate ourselves on fabrics and their impact on the environment
At the UNDONE, we take pride in saying that our beloved whites and neutrals in linen have significantly lower environmental impact than dyed linen. Think ivory, tan, and grey – Matin provides a perfect example. This is because when undyed, linen remains biodegradable. Not only is this incredible fabric environmentally-friendly, but it is extremely durable, long-wearing and will be sure to keep you cool during the Summer months.
Organic cotton is another one to opt for. It is renewable and sustainable, offers lasting comfort, and keeps its shape well once washed. The reason organic is often a better choice is because pesticide use is cut dramatically, leaving little to no residue from harmful chemicals that strip our soils and pollute our waterways.
Support local and handmade jewellery designers
Our home brands Surō, Holly Ryan, by NYE and Natasha Schweitzer design and make their jewellery by hand. We want to give Surō a particular mention, with everything from craftsmanship to wrapping of orders aiming to be as sustainable as possible. Aesthetic and design are not compromised by morality and philosophy. Instead, they are complemented by one another.
Fashion, alike many other international industries is concerned with the consumer, meaning that the styles that are produced will mirror their values, and what they deem important. The rise of social media has placed even more power in the hands of the indirect decision makers, the public. Therefore, it is up to us, now, more than ever to communicate exactly what we desire with both our voices and our dollars.
Man repeller article: https://www.manrepeller.com/2018/12/why-this-instagram-famous-maison-cleo-blouse-costs- 260.html
Greenpeace: https://www.greenpeace.org/archive- international/Global/international/publications/detox/2017/Fashion-at-the-Crossroads.pdf