Fashionably wasted: let’s make garbage stylish

Fashionably wasted: let’s make garbage stylish

About that truckload of waste… 

A lot has been said about modern day consumers’ insatiable hunger for fashion, but in fact we don’t truly “consume” it in the strict sense of the word at all: us possessing and wearing a garment is merely a step on its way to its final destination, which is the dump or the furnace. According to the New Textiles Economy, a report by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation that promotes a circular fashion system, every second the equivalent of one garbage truck of textile is either landfilled or burned. None of it is really worn through either, as more than half of what fast fashion produces is supposedly disposed of in under a year.

This is not without consequences on the economical level, but even worse, it puts tremendous pressure on our ecosystem. The wastage is responsible for disastrous water and air pollution, puts local economies at risk and has a high human prize to pay too. It doesn’t really matter how natural or not the fibers in question are, as the commercial farming of say cotton, hemp, bamboo or linnen is also chemical-, water- and land extensive -at least, if it is to meet the fast and furious paste set by our current fashion industry.

The solution? To break the chain and work towards a closed loop system instead of endlessly taking-making-wasting our planet’s natural resources. Reducing the use of raw, virgin materials by re-entering existing fabrics in the supply chain, thereby never letting them end up as waste, is one step towards both a more environmental-friendly ànd economically viable fashion system. In fact, consider it this way: the “raw” material of the future ìs waste, and we should find ways to make it wearable. In the Getting Fashionably Wasted series, we explore alternatives, possible solutions and challenges on the path towards a closet filled with wonderful design waste…

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