Image: Anita Dongre Grassroot
Over the last few years, conversation in fashion has slowly but surely been focussing on ethics and sustainability in the industry. The onus of mindful consumption thus falls on consumers – to support ethical brands and inculcate practices that are fair and eco-friendly, and boycott brands that aren’t. While the task may seem daunting, it only takes little tweaks to everyday habits to build a wardrobe that loves the planet and is kind to people. Here are tips to keep it cute but conscious!
Purchase Quality Over Quantity
A good way to cut down your trips to the mall is to pick fabrics that last longer. Often, quality clothing costs more than a fast-fashion piece, but it will last you several years longer than that bargain t-shirt and save you a lot more money in the end.
Bring Out the Heirlooms
Vintage is the new black, and some of the most unique clothes and accessories can be found in your mother’s and grandmother’s closet. Dig deep into these and you will find one-of-a-kind saris, jewellery and handbags which are way better than brand new stuff! This reduces your personal consumption of new cloth that ends up in landfills.
A mindful way to approach fashion is to do some homework on the brands you want to spend your coin on. Research if they have efficient production processes, their workers are paid fair wages, if they use natural fabric, and whether they make an effort to reduce their carbon print. Only invest in brands that are committed to being better.
Support Local Businesses
Image: Manushi Chillar in Mayera Jaipur
If environmental degradation worries you, the best way to ease your own guilt is by supporting homegrown brands which use local talent to design and produce clothes. These brands also tend to use locally sourced material which means less fuel and resources used to make your clothes.
Cherish Existing Clothes
It’s important to remember that the most conscious decision is to buy clothes only when you need them. Over-buying new clothes and under-using your existing pieces is wasteful and a complete no-no if you want to be more mindful with fashion.