What is sustainable fashion really? 

In my perspective, sustainable fashion can be a variety of things. It can be:

  • The choice of materials (e.g. use less water, is certified, contains no chemicals, recycled materials)
  • Improved working conditions throughout the supply chain (e.g. Fairtrade, GOTS certificate)
  • Handing in old clothes to shops with recycling programs or at second-hand shops.
  • Redesigning old clothes or things (e.g. my sculptured earrings)
  • Buying second hand or vintage clothes (find all the good vintage shops here)
  • Renting clothes (see list below and see Dorte’s experience here)
  • Having a minimalistic and trans-seasonal wardrobe
  • Using your clothes as much as possible (see post about styling here)
  • Taking care and loving your clothes (find here 7 care-taking tips you can do instead of washing your clothes)

Consequently, brands are adapting and interpreting sustainability in their way. I think it is important to remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day, but at the same time brands shouldn’t misuse the word ‘sustainable’ but instead tell their customers how they interpret sustainable.

What is the most sustainable choice?

Sustainability is a lot of things when it comes to our closet and there is no simple answer, but several and actually it includes all of the above mentioned.

However, the problem of the fashion industry is our way of consuming fashion. We use clothes as it was disposal, and we apologize clothes purchases with “it was so cheap that it’s ok if I only wear it once”, or if it is out of style then “I don’t know how to style it”.

Because in order to combine being fashionable and following the trends, then it’s really difficult also to be sustainable. And nobody wants to be the ‘basic girl’ wearing plain and non-seasonal clothes all the times.

Therefore, I would recommend everybody to try out the new subscription based clothes libraries. Choosing this way of being sustainable, you stop doing stupid impulse buyings, which in the end just hangs in the back of your closet, and ends being thrown out to a recycling shop. And why not break that old habit?

Subscription-based clothes

  • Vera’s Copenhagen;
  • Organic Club at Istedgade, Østerbro, Nørrebro, Odense, Svendborg (if you become a member now, you only pay 99kr/month, but in the new year it will cost 199kr/month):
  • Amorin (Wedding dresses and costumes)

Aarhus:

Online in Denmark:

For the men:

Online international:

Do you know other companies where you can rent clothes, bags or shoes instead of buying it? Mention them I a comment below and I will add them in the text for others to use :) 

Stine Pedersen

Stine is passionated about the ongoing question of how to make a transition of the fashion industry and how sustainability and fashion can be connected. She will therefore write about alternative ways of 'consuming' fashion such as vintage, up-cycling and redoing. She is currently Project Manager at Leaderlab and LAUNCH, and has a background as Sustainable Design Engineer finishing of with a thesis in how to implement Circular Economy in a large danish fast fashion brand. Besides this interest, she always has a full calendar with friends, family,  training, exhibitions, sewing... // CONTACT: stinekolding@gmail.com

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