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Retail Therapy for You and the Planet

Is there anything better than thrift-shopping? Surrounded as I am by patterned shirts, pre-loved jeans and docs that I didn’t even have to break in myself, I’d argue no!

Luckily for me, there are loads of slow and circular fashion events coming up at the end of the month! On the 23rd and 24th of July there will be a sew-fabulous celebration of all things circular fashion – and the event is completely FREE! Sewing workshops, screen printing, clothes swaps, stalls and exhibitors, beautiful vintage clothing and textiles for sale – go nuts!

There will also be another kilo sale on Saturday 24th July where Worth the Weight Vintage will be bringing tonnes of vintage to Bartholomew’s Church for you to trawl 10am to 5pm. Beautiful vintage in a beautiful church – who could wish for more? Fulfil all your slow fashion needs at ridiculously affordable prices – just £15 per kilo!

And items over a kilo I hear you ask? They are limited to £15 each! So you could be picking up a hefty pair of pre-worn-in Docs, or living your full Matrix trench coat fantasy for literally the price of a round at the pub (if you have like 3 friends because Brighton, let’s be real).

For anyone unsure about pre-worn clothes, doesn’t know what fast-fashion is, or hasn’t been utterly depressed about the state of the world yet today: here’s some propaganda to get you fully invested into the wonderful world of vintage and slow-fashion. 

Scary facts: 

  • Clothes are produced in an unethical way – 93% of brands surveyed in 2020 are not paying their clothes workers a living wage. 

It’s a common known fact that most clothes sold on the high street are factory produced in “emerging” or “developing” nations, like China, North Korea, Indonesia and Bangladesh. The clothes are cheap because Western businesses are cutting costs by severely underpaying their staff and providing sweat-shop working conditions in these countries. 

The worst of these sweatshops have been found to be exploiting young children for labour, there are estimated 250 million children between 5-14 currently working in sweat-shops in developing countries. 

As part of the survey in 2020, brands were asked if they had a “time-bound, measurable roadmap or strategy for how they will achieve a living wage for all workers across their supply chains”. Only 5 of the 250 (2%) surveyed did.

  • Clothes manufacturing is really bad for the environment – textile production has a larger negative impact on climate change than the international flight and shipping industry COMBINED! 

Part of lowering production costs includes the cost of materials used – this translates to man-made synthetic materials, essentially chemically processed, plastic based fabric that will never biodegrade. The production waste from this process is then flushed away into streams, lakes and oceans – a toxic sludge that damages every living thing it comes into contact with along the way. 

Production itself is also damaging – the fashion industry is responsible for 8% of the world’s carbon emissions. From start to finish clothes take a lot of manufacturing – huge amounts of water is needed to irrigate crops (cotton), pesticides are used in abundance and harvest machinery, production processes and the shipping of fabric and finished products to and from factories are all hugely reliant on the burning of fossil fuels. 

  • Barely any clothes have been recycled and re-used – 3 out of 5 of the clothes produced have been dumped, and end up in landfills.

This is not just from consumers, who apparently each individually throw away 81 pounds of clothing a year in America (wild!), but also the companies themselves. Most fast fashion companies dump or burn unsold stock – a huge waste of natural resources, worker’s time and potential for other use… Those clothes could go to people who need it all over the world. 

According to the Ellen MacArthur foundation – whose goal is to promote circular economies the world over – “More than $500 billion of value is lost every year due to clothing underutilization and the lack of recycling”

Right that’s probably enough bad news…

Some good news! Fast-fashion has finally found a worthy adversary – slow-fashion! Slow-fashion has risen in popularity massively in the last few years, with people everywhere going wild for vintage and pre-owned items. Here’s a few reasons why: 

  • The clothes are awesome

Not only will you be wearing clothes completely unique to you, but they will be (shock) well-made! Fast-fashion relies on people buying a never ending stream of poorly constructed clothes that can be (and have to be) tossed after a few uses. The clothes at the Pre-loved Kilo are all individually handpicked for quality by their staff and are in tip top condition, so they will be with you for many many years to come! 

  • The quality of clothing for the price you pay is unbelievable! 

£15 a kilo!!!! Let me give you some idea of what this means: At the last Kilo event I went to at the Open Market right here in Brighton, I bought 6 funky fresh patterned t-shirts, 3 silk scarves, a full length dress, 2 suspenders AND a sleeveless ¾ length kimono jacket.. thingie.. FOR LITERALLY £30. I had to go lie down, I was in such shock. Compare that to some of the permanent vintage shops in Brighton where I couldn’t find a checked shirt for less than £20…. Anyway, it really is so so worth it. 

  • Slow-fashion companies is actually doing something about the issues I depressed you with above! 

They’ve saved at least 500 tonnes of clothing from going to landfill already – that’s huge! 

Wearing clothes that someone else has loved and passed along and bringing them back to life is a genuine joy that makes a huge difference to your impact on this little planet we call Earth. 

Don’t miss out on these pop up vintage events to inject a little old into your wardrobe… and if you miss it then even better news! Preloved Kilo has now partnered with ASDA to bring their vintage to everybody forever. The ASDA in Hollingbury was one of the first in the country to get in Preloved stock – so you can fill your boots with super affordable vintage any time. 

For more information:

20 Hard Facts and Statistics About Fast Fashion

https://www.theworldcounts.com/challenges/people-and-poverty/slavery-and-sweatshops/sweatshop-workers-conditions/story

https://www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/

 

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