IS FASHION BECOMING DISPOSABLE?
I have been in love with fashion since as far back as I can remember. I never wanted to dress like everyone else. When I was 16, I remember the Parka being the “It“ coat, but I begged my mother for a Peacoat, of course not warm enough for Chicago Winter, but I was willing to risk it. When I was a senior in high school headed to my second prom, I had seen the now famous photo of Bianca and Mick Jagger partying at Studio 54. Bianca dressed in white satin pants suit became my obsession, and that is exactly what I wore to my prom.
Years later my boyfriend, now husband, and I were moving to London. David handed me a duffle and said, ”This will have to do for now.” It was at that moment the minimalist in me sprouted. I wanted to be the cool girl who only had a few good things and could travel the world with one bag.
Fast forward to years later and here we are, with Zara, Cos, J. Crew and Mango all just begging us to stop in, buy something “of the moment” and trash it next season. Everyone is susceptible and it is almost impossible to ignore. Pam desperately tried not to fall for leopard this season. I will admit it was difficult for both of us. We all know fashion is wasteful but help is on the way!
There are many brands that are making an effort to help battle this issue – and lots of them we shop already. Below, some brands/stores that will help make us all feel just a wee bit better when we buy something trendy that we know won’t stand the test of time.
MADEWELL: Did you know that Madewell takes back jeans from any brand and will recycle them and give you $20 towards your next purchase? They also team up with quite a few charities throughout the year, so go ahead and feel good about buying some new denim.
EVERLANE: This brand is a personal favorite of mine - they built their business model on transparency in production and pricing. Go to the Everlane site and you can see how their $15 tee costs $6.50 to produce. They make the cutest puffer constructed from 32 renewed plastic bottles.
VEJA: We all know “The Duchess” loves her some Veja. The company mission is to purchase ecologically grown cotton from small Brazilian farms, where agro-chemicals and pesticides are banned. It helps to preserve the lifestyle of hundreds of families who do organic farming while protecting the environment. So go ahead - be a Duchess and get a pair of your new favorite sneakers!
ZERO + MARIA CORNEJO: And speaking of royalty, former first lady Michelle Obama’s favorite dress designer, Maria Cornejo, focuses on environmental responsibility in her designs. In the 20 years since launching her coveted ready-to-wear label, Zero + Maria Cornejo,the Chilean-born designer has worked with upcycled cashmere and wood-derived viscose to produce her iconic cocoon silhouettes and signature fluid styles.
ALTERNATIVE APPAREL: And finally our favorite T-shirt brand whose mission is to be mindful of its people and the impact waste has on our planet. Their Alternative Eco line is crafted purely from eco and organic materials. They even use oxo-biodegradable mailer bags and have implemented recycling programs with their vendors.
It’s nice to know that there are a few fashion brands making a concerted effort to neutralize the waste, because at the end of the day - we love to shop but we want to feel good about it too.
Shop the Post (and yes, you can feel good about it!)