In the past few years, we’ve heard a lot about “fast fashion” and many people taking a stance against big brands that fuel the micro-trends that we see all over the internet and social media. Some brands that have been under the radar include H&M, Forever 21, Victoria’s Secret, Gap, and Zara. They were first brought into the mainstream spotlight back in 2013 when a large garment factory outside of Dhaka, Bangladesh collapsed due to cracks in the structure and killed over 1,100 people. These people were factory workers, and this incident exposed a greater social problem. These workers were forced to work despite their complaints about the obviously visible cracks in the building. On the tragic day the structure collapsed, reports from workers state that they were told that they would not get their month’s pay if they did not continue their work. While many people shouted out to point blame at others, many believe this incident highlighted the neglect of basic human rights.
Livia Firth, actor Colin Firth’s wife, visited Bangladesh in 2009 and was deeply impacted by what she saw happening on the ground at the garment factories. As a result, she founded Eco-Age, a brand consultancy that helps brands become more sustainable. In an interview for the documentary film called the The True Cost, Livia speaks of some of her work. One of the challenges she put forward through her various initiatives was called the “Green Carpet Challenge”, where she only wore sustainable and ethical fashion on the red carpets alongside her husband. A way that Livia challenges everyday consumers to contribute to the mission of sustainable fashion is to stop and think before buying anything. Is this something that you will wear 30 times or more? Asking this simple question before mindlessly purchasing a piece of clothing for just one night out, or just because it is on sale can really have a huge impact in the long run. So think about it the next time you are raiding the likes of H&M or Zara – would you wear it 30 times? If every woman did this during her shopping sprees, our closets would look a lot different and probably be more organized. At Seams for Dreams, we believe that everyone should only invest in clothing they plan on wearing multiple times and our Garage Sales even encourage people to buy pre-loved clothes. Make sure you look out for our next Garage Sale event!