Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Trying to clothes shop ethically

by Grandma Chic

Calling myself an ethical fashion and knitwear designer, alot of people assume I make all my own clothes and I wish I could but really don't have time. I hardly ever step into a real shop and make a purchase (I'm usually just looking for research purposes) and feel uncomfortable for different reasons. Always looking at where things are made and from what, I wonder who made it and how it got there. I'm not going to give you a lecture on the virtues of ethical fashion because more than likely you are already a charity/vintage shopper if you are following this blog. So instead I'm sharing a few of my own experiences of trying to shop more ethically.

Charity shops
These are vital for shopping on a budget. I look out for quality fabrics and items I know I can wear with little alteration. Majorly avoid Primark items as they just won't last, even if they are cheap, they were cheap to start with! Also, if you have the time, rummaging in charity shops can be great fun - you never know what you will find.

Vintage shops and fairs
Not just nice places to be, vintage shops and fairs are very good for unique pieces that cost a bit more but will guarantee something special. Much more fun than normal shops!

Ethical labels
It's encouraging to see more high street brands rethinking their products and using organic cotton, fairtrade and recycled fabrics. Though they are few and far between and alot more needs to be done with working practices and welfare standards. There are of course brands like People Tree which create really wearable and affordable ethical fashion, with designs that I really like. I'm sure to check out their collections to reassure me the fashion industry is progressing.

Sewing and knitting
Make your own, repair what you've got and alter what you can (or ask someone very nice to help you!) When I do make time to sew or knit something for myself I still get excited about wearing it. Just remember that things take time and 'slow fashion' is the way forward!

Thank you for reading. Be sure to keep up to date with the Toile Together gang!

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