It’s Fashion Revolution week next week (April 24th – April 30th). Fashion revolution is a global movement working calling for fairer, safer, cleaner and more transparent fashion industry. Fashion Revolution was born after the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh on April 25th, 2013. 1,138 people died and another 2,500 were injured making it the fourth largest industrial disaster in history.
People should not be losing their lives making the clothes we were and it’s time to stand up and demand change!
If the unnecessary loss of lives isn’t enough to convince you fashion needs to change, may these facts will.
- It is estimated that 80 billion items of clothing are made in factories annually
- It takes 2720 litres of water to make a t-shirt, that’s how much you would normally drink over 3 years
- Clothing consumption produces 1.5 tonnes of CO2 by household per year, that’s the equivalent of driving 6000 cars
- It takes 200 gallons of water to make one pair of jeans, that’s the equivalent of 285 showers
- The clothes discarded in one year in the UK would fill Wembley Stadium
- The average British woman hoards £285 of clothes she will never wear, the equivalent of 22 outfits which are taking up valuable wardrobe space.
- This works out as £30 billion of unworn clothes in our homes
- 95% of discarded clothing can be recycled or upcycled.
Do you think we need to change now?
Who made your clothes?
Unfortunately, the Rana Plaza disaster wasn’t a one off and the people who make your clothes continue to work in unsafe conditions. The majority of the people who make clothes for our favourite brands live in poverty, unable to afford life’s basic necessities. Many are subject to exploitation, verbal and physical abuse, working in unsafe conditions with very little pay and no rights. This needs to change!
The fashion industry needs to become more transparent so we as consumers know how our clothes are made. This is what Fashion Revolution is all about asking who made my clothes?
We all deserve to know who makes out clothes and under what conditions.
So, this Fashion Revolution week get involved and ask brands and retailers #whomademyclothes
How you can get involved
- Ask who made my clothes. The easiest way to get involved is by taking a photo of your clothing label during Fashion Revolution Week and asking the brand who made your clothes. Share your photo on social media tagging the brand in the photo and use #whomademyclothes
- Write a letter. If you want to take things a step further why not write a letter to a brand asking who made your clothes. Tell them you want to feel good when you wear them and knowing where they come from is important to you. Ask about how they ensure the people making your clothes are being paid a living wage and treated fairly. If you want to share your letter on social media remember to tag the brand and Fashion Revolution @fash_rev
- Write to a Policymaker. Ask your local MP or MSP what they are doing to ensure people around the world have fair working conditions. Ask them about regulation to ensure companies are responsible for the impact they have on the lives of people working in their supply chains, at home and abroad.
- Create a Fashion Revolution ‘love story’. Do you have a favourite jacket or may a beautiful dress your grandmother wore? Rather than buying something new tell people about the clothes you love. If you have a blog write a post sharing your love story or share on Instagram during Fashion Revolution week. I’ll be sharing a couple of my fashion love stories on Instagram next week so look out for them.
- Haulternative. Instead of the tradition fashion haul sharing, lots of new purchases create a haulternative instead. Share some of your favourite second hand or vintage finds, shop your wardrobe or try your hand at up cycling. Get creative and share your haulternative.
- Attend a local event. Check out eh Fashion Revolution website for a full list of events taking place. There is bound to be something on near you. Pop along and learn more about how you can support ethical and sustainable fashion. If you live near Edinburgh I have been working with Colour Elements to organise an event taking place on Wednesday 26th I will be running a workshop on building a sustainable wardrobe and would love to have you there. Full details can be found on my Facebook page.
- Educate Yourself. Read up on the impact fast fashion is having on people and the planet. I’ve written lots on this topic to help you get started. Instead of shopping next week spend your time learning about ethical and sustainable brands. To help you out I will be featuring some amazing ethical brands every day next week with meet the maker interviews.
There you have it 7 ways you can get involved this Fashion Revolution week. Remember I will be sharing some great ethical brands every day next week here and there will be lots more Fashion Revolution content on my Instagram. Tag me in your Fashion Revolution posts so I can see them.
Fashion Revolution Week
Is Ethical Fashion Only For The Wealthy?
Ethical Fashion Reading List
How to Handle Feeling of Guilt About Fast Fashion
Why You Should Care About Ethical Fashion
Threadbare: Clothes, Sex & Trafficking
Fast Fashion Facts
Slow Fashion by Safia Minney
Fast Fashion: Is IT A Feminist Issue?
5 Sustainable Fashion Videos
7 Steps To A More Sustainable Wardrobe