How to Engage with Ethical Fashion
We are awash in images of new fashion for the FW17 season, and the designs are gorgeous. But how can we enjoy style fun without contributing to the egregious waste and exploitation of the fashion industry, especially when fast fashion makes it easy to embrace every trend?
|Sustainably chic in a Karina dress!|
One way I try to limit my fashion footprint is by supporting sustainable, ethical fashion brands. The documentary The True Cost was instrumental in changing the way I looked at the clothing I buy. I'll be honest ... the film is shocking. It reveals the ways fast fashion depletes the earth's resources and utilizes what can only be described as slave labor in horrific and even deadly working conditions. I had begun to wonder why I could buy a pair of shoes for only $14. The answer? Because the industry had found a cruel, wasteful way to cut costs.
That just didn't sit well with me.
I realized that while our global economy is praised by politicians and big business as good for American corporations and consumers, it actually means that most of the goods we buy in America are made elsewhere, often in appalling conditions. It's not just fashion, either. Almost everything we purchase -- from mobile phones to furniture -- is manufactured in settings with far less worker protections or environmental consideration than laws would allow here.
So how do we even begin to make a difference without buying nothing, moving to a cabin in the woods and eschewing the modern world?