I don’t usually make New Years resolutions, not because I don’t love goals and lists and feeling inspired, but because I make a birthday list in July instead (currently working through my ’27 things to do before 28′ list!)
But for those of you thinking about your goals and intentions for the new year, here’s a few ideas towards a better wardrobe in 2016 (for both those brand new to making more ethical/ sustainable choices, through to those who are already on the journey)!
1. Commit to no new clothing purchases for three months – break the bonds of consumerism.
Especially after all the shopping of the Christmas season, try putting a pause on all new buys!
2. Make do and mend – get all those items missing buttons / needing taking in / needing repairs to the tailor or pull out your own needle and thread.
I gathered up all our unloved, in-need-of-mending pieces a few months ago – 12 items between the two of us. The tailor took things in, took things out, added buttons (we are so lazy) and brought back to life 12 perfectly good items that were otherwise sitting unworn in our cupboards.
3. Make your very first purchase from a fairtrade / ethical / organic or eco-friendly better brand!
I’ve been keeping a list here, but there are so many better brands out there that make good quality clothing that’s both better for the planet and nice on the eyes.
4. Buy ONLY fairtrade / ethical / organic or eco-friendly brands!
This is what I’m working on for all new pieces. To be honest, it’s not always easy but it’s making me much more thoughtful about what I add to my wardrobe… and it gives me a real buzz to know I’m not contributing to some horrible sweatshop operation.
5. Thrift it – source all your new clothing purchases at your local secondhand store.
My favourite work shirt is a $3 blouse from the secondhand market down the road. I’m looking forward to adding more pre-loved pieces to my wardrobe over the coming year.
6. Commit to a 30-day waiting period – no spur of the moment clothing purchases.
So this is also good for the hip pocket 😉 But with so much advertising around and a pervasive ‘buy buy buy’ consumeristic mentality, it feels good for the soul to say no to instant gratification and add some mindfulness to our shopping habits.
7. Learn a new skill and knit / sew / crochet a DIY item of clothing.
You might pick up a new hobby in the process!
8. Ask your five favourite brands #whomademyclothes and keep asking until you get an answer!
Jump on the Fashion Revolution campaign bandwagon and encourage the big brands to pick up their game and ensure their products aren’t harming the very human beings who are making them!
9. Educate yourself about the fashion industry – from fibers to dyeing and fabric production, to sweatshops and living wages and child labour.
10. Take good care of the clothes you already own – follow the care instructions, wash less, put everything away neatly!
No more shrinking that wool sweater in the washing machine, or using a too-hot iron to burn through your favourite blouse. We’re losing the culture of caring about our possessions, precisely because of our ‘disposable’ mindset and the rise of fast fashion. Value what you own and adopt the ‘buy less, choose better, make it last‘ mentality!!
May 2016 be the year of your own better wardrobe!