Op Ed: Sustainable Fashion
BY KENDRA SCRUGGS, HG 2014
I‘ve been passionate about the environment for as long as I remember, but it wasn’t until college that I realized it was something that I wanted to further integrate into my life. While teaching myself more about living sustainably, I simultaneously started working in retail, and it was then that I discovered how interested I am in fashion, more specifically, sustainable fashion. Sustainable fashion encompasses fashion that puts sustainability at their forefront by reducing waste, using recycled fabrics, reducing water consumption, using low energy manufacturing methods, and the like. Sustainable fashion can also include fair trade fashion, sourcing material responsibly, as exploitation is a significant problem within the industry.
The importance to turn to sustainable fashion is supported by the staggering waste and pollution statistics attributed to the fashion industry. Greenpeace has noted that it takes 2,700 liters of water
to make just one t-shirt; that an estimated 400 billion square meters of textile are produced annually, of which 60 billion square meters are left on the cutting room floor; that three out of four garments will end up in landfills or be incinerated; and that hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing end up in water pipe discharges, as well as emissions in air and solid waste. In 2011, Greenpeace launched a
Detox campaign to challenge companies to become more transparent about their manufacturing processes and to remove hazardous chemicals from all steps of production by 2020, with the hope that this will reduce toxic water pollution around the world.
Several companies have taken steps to meet this challenge; and I try to support those brands as well as other brands that align with taking steps to mitigate other environmental issues of importance to me.
I have been lucky enough to collaborate with some of those brands, including Fair Anita, Wristponsible, The Fab Collective, and Marie Hell. These collaborations have either consisted of interviews or product reviews. Typically, I am sent a product in exchange for an honest review on my blog. It's really nice because it helps me discover more brands and share them with other people. It is important to partner with brands that I truly connect with and admire rather than any company that comes my way.
I started my blog as a way to learn more about the sustainable fashion industry and to share that information with others. I never expected to learn so much and discover so many amazing brands! My blog has helped me realize just how big the sustainable fashion community is and how many inspiring brands are out there making a difference. My passion for the environment and importance of sustainability goes beyond my blog and sustainable fashion; I am now trying to focus on living sustainably as a whole. Living an eco-friendlier life doesn’t have to be challenging or inconvenient! I firmly believe that with small changes that we can make to our daily lives, we would have a lasting impact on our planet, and I hope to help others see that too.
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