#MySecondHandSelfie -Why we need to rethink our fashion choices

Uncategorized

It’s currently London fashion week. Clothes, design, and excessive consumerism are once again a huge talking point. I dread to think how much money I’ve spent over the last few years on clothes. Not much makes me happier than scrolling endlessly through ASOS, rummaging through the shelves of Primark or even tackling Topshop on Oxford Street in the sales. I won’t even go into the heaps of clothes that dominate my bedroom (and chaotic floordrobe…) but it’s rare that I take a moment to think about where my clothes came from, how they were made and how they reached me. Companies constantly shove it down our throats that they have a sale on but when was the last time you saw a high street chain be honest and transparent about the design and production of their garments?

‘Children work at all stages of the supply chain in the fashion industry: from the production of cotton seeds in Benin, harvesting in Uzbekistan, yarn spinning in India, right through to the different phases of putting garments together in factories across Bangladesh.’ – in many developing countries children are subjected to exhausting working hours, exposure to pesticides, dangerous working conditions, are often paid below the minimum wage and consequently don’t have the opportunity to go to school. Basically they are exploited for the sake of new clothes for the Western world. 

Screen Shot 2016-02-21 at 09.06.56

credit – saybrook prodcutions

 

It got me thinking; I love to think that I live fairly sustainably, but how can I preach that to others whilst not even considering the effect of my consumerism on the world. One good part I play in this is that I have a love for second hand clothing. That doesn’t just mean the occasional charity shop find – I mean I seem to find clothes and even homeware items in a large foray of unexpected places. To me, second hand means anything thats been passed on from another owner before reaching me. I find second hand clothes at car boot sales, markets, vintage stores, ebay, depop and from friends or family members. Some of my favourite outfits are made up of second hand items.

The advantages of buying second hand are;

+ environmentally and ethically friendly

+ you can find unique pieces

+ you can find fashions from another era

+ clothes are often built to last; if they’ve made it this far they’re of decent quality

+ often cheaper – second hand clothing is on average 50% cheaper than the brand new equivalent

+ your money stays in the community

+ It’s green; cuts down on manufacturing demands and prevents clothes going to landfill

+ friendly service

+ there’s a possibility of finding designer pieces

+ constant new stock

+ you can find clothes for any season year round

+ if you buy from a charity shop you’re financially supporting that charity

If you struggle with finding second hand clothing you love, why not go the extra mile and make your own clothes? If you use unwanted or ethically sourced material you could create your own designs and ensure they’re totally one of a kind. 

Screen Shot 2016-02-21 at 09.14.36

rocking all vintage

To join this fashion revolution you don’t need to be an expert or have heaps of time on your hands – you just need to think outside of the box! Here are a few ideas to help you become more stylishly sustainable;

+ hold a clothes swap party with friends

+ don’t think twice about lending your clothes to your friends

+ old t shirts can be made into scrunchies

+ old pillowcases can be transformed into shopping bags

+ revive a dull outfit with embellishment 

+ add new laces to an old pair of boots

+ tie dye t shirts

+ raid your grannies closet for cosy jumpers and cool jewellery – a clear out for her, new stuff for you! win win

+ change the purpose of an item to give it a new lease of life e.g. a bracelet as a hair accessory, wear a maxi skirt as a dress with a belt, 

+ use old socks as dusters

+ add studs to denim shorts

+ donate your old clothes to a clothes bank or charity shop instead of throwing away (or sell on ebay if you’re skint)

‘Yaaaas I love it Mary, how can I get involved?’ 

Do you know what 2016 needs? A new hashtag/selfie/challenge trend. Regardless of your thoughts on these (raising awareness or just plain vain?) it won’t cost you a thing to display your favourite second hand piece of clothing, homeware, book, whatever to inspire others. If it’s been passed on from another owner or customised or made by yourself, go ahead and show it off! I want to see a photo and short description of how it came into your possession posted on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter (or all 3 if you’re extra keen) with the hashtag #MySecondHandSelfie and tag me, @Girl Got Lost on Facebook, @girlgotlost_ on Instagram and @mandefieldx on Twitter. Make your post public so everyone can see it and tag a few friends who you want to nominate to do the same. Great chance to nosey into the wardrobes of your mates and encourage others to shop a little more second handedly. 

We have enough clothes, despite society trying to convince you otherwise. Stop saying you have ‘nothing to wear’ when you’re standing in front of a wardrobe fit to burst. Stop stressing about the latest trends and focus on finding things that make you feel great. Fashion doesn’t need to be so damaging and disposable. Let’s challenge ourselves to think creatively when it comes to clothing. 

Woah, I’ve thrown a lot of facts and ideas your way. sorry about that! I don’t mean that everyone has to become a braless hippie, I’m merely wishing to plant a seed of thought of how you shop and dress. Let’s celebrate second hand and hand made clothes and give a little less support to large corporations who exploit child labour and wreck the environment by importing materials from half way around the world. Let’s continue rocking vintage looks and living just a tiny bit more sustainably.

peace out.

Mary

Screen Shot 2016-02-21 at 09.15.39

all of us working our preloved and borrowed clothes.

p.s. have a read if you want to find out more

https://labs.theguardian.com/unicef-child-labour/

https://www3.nd.edu/~jsherry/pdf/2012/FastFashionSustainability.pdf

and click here to see my first of many #MySecondHandSelfie 

I’m lovin’ it pt. 2

Murcia

It’s been a week of change. Here’s what I’ve been enjoying over the past 7ish days (that a lie, it’s been like 3 weeks).

IMG_0068

murcia, spain.

 


Places

My bedroom at home (UK) is one of my favourite places as it’s filled with all my useless junk. But my mum is the master of disguise and it always seems to be tidy when I come back home to visit. Nothing beats sleeping on a memory foam mattress, surrounded by disney cuddly toys with a backlog of magazines saved for me.


Listening

I’ve been loving chilled out, summer trap music recently and this song is one of my favourites right now

Mura Masa – Firefly

I can’t away from this song; our next door neighbours in Paris wanted to have a song battle the other day and this one ended it (I won). I just hope it doesn’t get too overplayed over summer. The video makes me wanna go to India and get my groove orrrrn.

Major Lazor & DJ Snake ft MO – Lean On

I go through phases with Flume but they’re getting me through long walks to work.

Flume – Holdin’ on

Nearly as fab as ‘treat me like fire’. The girl (Jillian) from Lion Babe has the best hair.

Lion Babe – wonder woman


Apping

Kloe got Bitstrips so I had to copy. Ha I know we’re so late to the party. It’s annoying that you can’t add highlights to your hair or random hair braids. Or birthmarks or beauty spots. Boo.

IMG_0069 IMG_0070


Watching

This must be one of the most random facts I’ve heard in a while but did anyone else know that the producer Naughty Boy was on Deal or No Deal!!?!?!?!?! And he’s from Watford big up Hertfordshire ah yeah. I feel like everyone should watch this as a reminder; don’t brag about losing loads of weight on TV then proceed to put it all back on again?! And don’t steal Zayn from 1D! 

 


Exercise

A whole lot of walking. What happens when you live outside of Paris and miss the last metro home? ‘Get a simple night bus or taxi!’ I hear you cry. Well apparently I was feeling pumped and ready for a 9 mile walk home the other night. Am I ok?!


Buying

I don’t have much money and not much work lined up (for now) but who can resist a floaty beach cover up for €5 from the local charity shop?! The answer is not me.

IMG_0073


Reading

Who’d of thought Easyjet magazine ‘Traveller’ would be any good?! It’s worth a read if you’re on a cheapo flight across Europe, the articles are cute and actually relevant to travelling, living, partying and working in the city. Plus you can take it away with you for free. Ah yeah flying economic all day day erryday.


Random – Hair

I dyed my hair again. It’s almost identical to the pink ombre but a bit darker and the box dye suggests more purple. But it lied and its hardly purple, must find brighter dye!

IMG_0072

Until next time kiddos,

Mary x