If there’s one movie you have to watch this year, it’s The True Cost. It’s a must watch.
We all participate in the fashion industry, even those who are not into fashion. Because we all wear clothes. And as consumers, we have a responsibility to know the impact that our clothing purchases have on our fellow citizens, and on the planet.
We can no longer plead ignorance when we buy a $12 t-shirt. That shirt was made by human hands, and when it comes to cutting costs and getting retail prices down, it’s the factory workers’ at the bottom of the chain that pay the price. They suffer, so that we can be like kids in a candy store, buying whatever we want because it’s so cheap we don’t even need to think about it.
Coffee or a new top anyone?
Sewing things is hard work. If you don’t think so, try making a shirt yourself. After all your efforts, if I said I’d give you 12 cents for the privilege, would you do it? Because that’s about what factory workers are getting paid.
It’s not right.
So how can we become more ethical shoppers?
Buy less, and buy better.
Here’s a few examples of how to do that:
- Good fair trade clothing can be hard to come by. We need to let retailers know it’s what we want. Ask ask ask when you shop, where your item was made.
Feel like asking is a drop in the bucket? We the consumers have to make our preferences known so that the demand builds to a point that retailers have to take notice. We’ve done it with eggs – McDonalds (in NZ) is soon changing to free range. So lets demand it with clothing.
- Buy local – things made in NZ will have been made ethically. And yes, the price is high, because it reflects the true cost of the hours taken to make the thing.
- Buy second hand.
- Learn to be content with what you have, and find other ways to entertain yourself, rather than by buying more.
- Don’t buy high fashion items. Buy pieces you truly love, that fit perfectly and really suit you, so that you are likely to wear them for years to come.
- Declutter your wardrobe – less is more. By keeping only what you love, you get a clearer sense of your own style. The less I have in my wardrobe, the more idea I have of what colours I wear, what I naturally like, what suits me best, so I buy smarter, and better.
Please watch the movie.
For everyone who watches the movie, AND subscribes to my blog (if you haven’t already) I’ll offer a half price decluttering session. That’s how much I want you to watch it! If you’re keen to take me up on the offer, just send me a message on the contact form, telling me what you thought of the movie, and whether you’d recommend it to others.
We can make change. Let’s start now.