The image above I took whilst trying on some clothes at ARKET. If for any reason you have spent even a little time researching sustainable clothing businesses, you surely know that ARKET isn't one of them because it is a sub-brand of the market-dominating company H&M. What is wrong with that you ask? Well, Hennes & Mauritz GesmbH is the second largest fast-fashion brand in the world – along with brands like ZARA, C&A, COS, Uniqlo, or PULL&BEAR.
During my discovery of the fashion universe, I quickly noticed that the inside is nothing close to the beauty on the outer display. Dying and underpaid employees who are working 14-16 hours 7 days a week, child labour of around 500.000 underaged. An industry that is the second largest pollutor of clean water and extendedly craves coal power in developing countries.
Lastly, all of these brands encourage exessive overconsumption with items being dumped within 35 days (on average) after they were bought. Sales, coupons, Black Friday – all of these are tools with one specific purpose: making customers buy more.
After finding out about all of these facts I was shooked and swore myself to shop responsible. For the good of the people working on my clothes, for the environment and our planet, and also for myself.
During our trip to Paris, my friend Jay and I had a conversation about fast fashion which eventually led to my shift of mindset. I gave myself the promise of not buying anything until I really need it, with that being a maximum of shopping twice a year.
That sounds harsh and it surely is, and it also takes some conscious planning and execution to stick to this challenge, but it is for the better. For now, I am going to through my whole wardrobe to sort out pieces I am not wearing anymore to donate them or gift them to friends who can make use of them for some more time.
After evaluating, I will really focus on buying essentials that fit together in almost every combination to reduce the amount of decisions in my life, as well as laying more weight on the quality and longlivability of my garments.
I am planning for my capsule wardrobe to look something like this:
3x black trousers
3x beige trousers
1x blue jeans
1x non-leather belt
5x black sweatshirts
3x grey sweatshirts
2x beige sweatshirts
5x black t-shirts
5x beige/white t-shirts
1x white shirt
1x winter boots
3x black jackets
Underwear, sportswear and accessories (watch, rings, etc.)
There is still quite a way to go to get there, but I actually find a lot of fun in sorting out, assessing whether the clothes I own still serve me or only take up space.
Before I conclude this article, I would love to mention some resources for sustainable and human-friendly places to shop at. So here is a collection of brands that I trust and confidently support in the way they do business and manufacture their products:
If you have any other brands or resources that you'd like to share please feel free to text me on Instagram. Also, I am excited to hear about your wardrobe and the garments you call your own.