Simple Tips to Help Make Fashion Sustainable
As more and more people become eco-conscious, sustainability has become an important aspect in many industries, including fashion.
Sustainability may seem like an industry-level issue, but there are actually many ways that we, as consumers, can help fashion become more sustainable.
Go for the Fila Court Tote Eco Bag Black which is versatile for all occasions, retailing at sgd55 at StyleupK
While sustainable fashion may seem like an abstract concept to most of us, all you need to get started on your sustainability journey is to keep the following simple tips in mind when shopping.
1. Buy intentionally
This may seem like a given—after all, no one buys clothes accidentally—but buying intentionally means more than just being aware of every purchase you make.
Some things you should consider when buying a clothing item include how you plan to style it, whether it will match with clothes you already own, is it cohesive with your general aesthetic, etc.
Of course, it may be difficult to keep track of and remember all of the clothing items you own.
Pinterest board example. Source: Pinterest
Websites like Pinterest can help you with this; while you may not be able to replicate your exact wardrobe on a Pinterest board, you can create a fashion aesthetic board to give you an idea of what clothing items would suit your style.
Being familiar with your personal style and aesthetic can help you when it comes to organising and decluttering your wardrobe as well. This will then make it easier for you to put together a capsule wardrobe.
A capsule wardrobe with a blue and black colour palette / Image: Wikipedia
The clothes in your capsule wardrobe can be mixed and matched in many ways to create a variety of different outfits, allowing you to make the most out of the clothes you own.
Since a capsule wardrobe should consist only of essential pieces that encompasses everything you need, some people may find it difficult to decide what clothing items to include in their capsule wardrobe.
However, this is actually easier than you might expect!
Ames Bubble Emblem Oversized Hoodie in Black, retailing at sgd79.50 at StyleupK
Can you wear your clothes 30 times? / Image: 30wears
Started by Livia Firth, founder of Eco-Age, an end-to-end agency for sustainable business strategy, the 30 Wears Challenge is a simple way for anyone to do their part in making sustainable fashion the norm.
As the name implies, the 30 Wears Challenge is about making sure that you wear every clothing item that you own at least 30 times.
This is good to keep in mind when shopping for new clothes—not only should you like the item, you should also be confident that you will make it worth your money and wear the clothing item as many times as you can.
There are definitely some clothing items that are more suitable for multiple wears than others, and it is these clothing items that are best suited to be part of your capsule wardrobe.
2. Go for basics
When in doubt, always go for basics. While basic clothing items may seem plain and boring, their plainness is actually a good thing!
Because of their plainness, basics can be styled with almost anything, which means that the more basic clothing items you own, the more combinations of outfits you’ll be able to put together!
Ames Two Torn Sweatpants, retailing at sgd89.50 at StyleupK
3. Choose versatile clothing items
Following that same logic, even if you’re going beyond basics, you should always consider the versatility of the clothing item. Some clothing items, such as oversized t-shirts and button-up shirts, can be worn in many different ways. For example, an oversized t-shirt can be worn both as a cropped top and as a dress.
Clothes that can be worn in multiple ways are a great option to include in capsule wardrobes.
Ames Rainbow Worldwide Oversized T-shirt in Grey, retailing at sgd49.50 at StyleupK
Another simple and effective way to add variety to your outfits is by accessorising. Not only do accessories help to make an outfit look more complete, they can also change the vibe of an outfit.
A simple t-shirt and jeans can be matched with a tote bag for a casual look, or can also be dressed up with a nice handbag for a look more suitable for a night out.
Alki Alka Joy Bag in Wine Red, retailing at sgd119.50 at StyleupK
Other accessories include jewellery, caps, and even shoes. A nice dress can be paired with a pair of heels, but can also be dressed down with a pair of sneakers—a combination that is highly popular in Korean fashion.
4. Colour palette
Other than making use of Pinterest to ensure that you have a cohesive aesthetic, you can also curate your capsule wardrobe by colour palette.
That doesn’t mean you can only own clothes in one colour, but all the colours in your capsule wardrobe should be able to match each other. For example, if you’re a fan of autumn colours, you can go for darker reds, greens, and yellows.
Kodak Apparel Yellow Red Big Logo Classic Oversized T-shirt Red, retailing at sgd80 at StyleupK
Having a consistent colour palette makes it much easier to match clothing items and put together a variety of different, but equally stylish, outfits.
5. Invest in quality items
One aspect of fast fashion that contributes to its popularity is how cheap it can be. However, cheap clothing often does not last as long, and has to be replaced fairly often.
While it may be daunting to spend so much money on a single clothing item, it is good to think of clothes as an investment.
Good quality items may cost more, but they are definitely worth your money in the long-run.
In fact, you might even end up spending more money having to constantly replace cheap items, compared to paying more for items that will last longer. And fill you with joy too!
You don’t always have to break your bank for quality items either. Alice Martha are globally renowned for their high quality women’s handbags, but even their Rosie bag (one of their most popular designs) is available for under $100.
Alice Martha Rosie Bag in Ivory, retailing at sgd89 at StyleupK
Of course, how long your clothing items last isn’t only dependent on how much you pay for them, but also depends on how well you take care of them.
6. Take proper care of your clothes
All clothes come with instructions on how to take care of them, from how they should be washed to how they should be dried, but let’s be honest, most of us don’t really pay attention to these instructions.
Did you know that it is recommended for ADLV t-shirts to be dry cleaned? Did you also know that putting your ADLV tee in the dryer may destroy the high-quality graphics that ADLV is known for?
If your answer is no, then you might not be taking proper care of your ADLV t-shirts.
ADLV Baby Face Bubble Baby Oversized Graphic T-shirt, retailing at sgd72 at StyleupK
While not following the instructions may not spoil the clothes immediately, taking proper care of them will definitely help to make them last longer.
Not only will this help you get your money’s worth of wear out of the clothes, this is also much better for the environment!
7. Upcycle old clothes
Upcycling refers to creative reusing of unwanted items. For example, old plastic bottles can be turned into bags and Adidas shoes!
But did you know that you can upcycle clothes at home as well?
A long-sleeved button-up can be turned into a cute sleeveless ribbon top / Image: We Heart It
While there are clothes that can be worn in different ways, there are still some limitations to how many different ways a simple oversized t-shirt can be worn.
Upcycling can give new life to old clothing. For example, a graphic t-shirt can be turned into a bandeau or cropped top, or a pair of jeans can be turned into a miniskirt.
8. Donate unwanted clothes
And if you’ve outgrown your upcycled clothes, or you no longer see yourself wearing them anymore, playing a part in making fashion sustainable can be as simple as donating your unwanted clothes.
Depending on where you choose to donate your clothes to, they will either be re-homed, or be used in the making of new clothes—yes, just like plastic bottles, clothes can be recycled as well!
Let's do our part to make fashion sustainable
Becoming a more eco-conscious consumer may seem daunting, but we can all do our part to make fashion more sustainable by keeping these simple tips in mind when shopping for new clothes.
Shop consciously at StyleupK today! StyleupK is an online korean fashion platform that only houses 100% authentic quality clothing. Ships worldwide.