The Secret To A Unique And Sustainable Wardrobe? Take It Slow

The slow fashion movement is picking up speed.

By Ryan Stagmier

“What do I wear?”

The first question most of us are faced with on a daily basis and it’s a decision that is becoming increasingly difficult to make.  Our closets overflow with clothes that are falling apart, clothes that were purchased impulsively, and clothes we just simply don’t care for anymore.

This is a direct result of fast fashion.  Fast fashion is a term coined for the mass production of clothing by the mainstream fashion industry that uses cheap materials for poor quality products.  Fast fashion companies will have extremely high inventory turn-over, which means that when you see a shirt you like, if you don’t purchase it right then it will be gone by next week.  Along with this even though you made a purchase, the next time you are in the store you once again see new clothes that will also be gone in a short period of time. It’s a dangerous cycle.  The fast fashion industry is known to be wasteful, irresponsible, and unsustainable.

There is a new fashion trend however, and it’s here to stay.

The slow fashion movement advocates for quality over quantity.  The clothes are designed with quality fabrics that are environmentally conscious opposed to being trend-driven.   You may have already participated in this movement if you’ve done any of the following:

  • Purchased vintage or second-hand clothing at thrift stores
  • Repaired torn or damaged clothing
  • Shopped from local transparent companies that take pride in their work

Seems pretty straight forward, right?  It is often overlooked how impactful the small fashion choices we make have on ourselves and the people crafting our clothes.

The difference you make by choosing slow fashion.

The fast fashion industry is one of major contributors to pollution (source: https://www.ecowatch.com/fast-fashion-is-the-second-dirtiest-industry-in-the-world-next-to-big–1882083445.html).  Highly dangerous pesticides and chemicals are often used in the production of fast fashion clothing that are both harmful to the environment and the workers who manufacture them.  Due to increased competition from the fashion industry’s major players, there is often labour exploitation and child labour used as well.

By choosing slow fashion, you are choosing safe and ethical work environments.  You are choosing a lower carbon footprint.

The difference slow fashion makes for you.

First and foremost, purchasing from the slow fashion industry can save you money.  The actual clothes themselves might cost more individually (if you’re not buying second hand) however; the quality of the clothes will be much greater and will last you much longer.  

Secondly, you will be choosing to put your money where your mouth is.  If you disagree with worker exploitation, and want to reduce your carbon footprint, then you already believe in the slow fashion movement.  Put your money where your clothes and the people making them are treated with care, and you can feel good about doing your part.

Last but not least, by choosing slow fashion you are crafting your own independent style.  Over time you will be creating a wardrobe that is uniquely you and you will develop a sense of style and individuality that fast fashion trends will never accomplish.  You are creating your own style.