June 01, 2021
Before we dive into defining Slow Fashion and the benefits of this production method, let's begin with the exact opposite. We have all heard of, and most probably used, the buzz phrase 'Fast Fashion' but what does it actually mean?
The Good Trade defines the term as:
Fast fashion is a design, manufacturing, and marketing method focused on rapidly producing high volumes of clothing. Garment production utilizes trend replication and low-quality materials in order to bring inexpensive styles to the public. These cheaply made, trendy pieces have resulted in an industry-wide movement towards overwhelming amounts of consumption. Unfortunately, this results in harmful impacts on the environment, garment workers, and, ultimately, consumers’ wallets.
Fast Fashion focuses on copying trend pieces and getting these products to the customer as quick as possible, there is little to no thought of how this is impacting our planet. The key elements for fast fashion business is low cost and speed; which unfortunately go hand in hand with a low quality garment being produced.
To achieve the low cost and quick turnaround; cheap materials are selected which usually consist of synthetic chemicals and materials, toxic dyes and microplastics. Not only is fast fashion leaving a huge footprint for production and disposal, but the workers are subject to extreme working conditions and poor wages.
Let's break this down further!
1) Synthetic Fibres are produced using oil which result in the carbon footprint of producing these fibres over double that of natural fibres. Not only this, but every time synthetic garments are washed, microplastics are released into the water which make their way into our oceans, harming sea life.
2) Fast Fashion is one of the highest contributors to Wastewater Production. To dye their clothes toxic chemicals are mixed with water... a shocking 200 tonnes of water is needed to produce 1 tonne of dyed fabric. The waste water (mixed with chemicals) then ends up in rivers, lakes and oceans.
3) Low Quality does not last! 85% of textiles produced end up in landfill.
4) Poor working conditions and wages for workers. In Bangladesh alone over 1800 people have died producing fast fashion since 2005.
This has to stop... and this is where Slow Fashion steps in.
As defined by us at This Is Anyo:
Slow fashion is defined as the ethical and sustainable movement for creating and buying clothing that is made for longevity. It is the conscious movement of buying less and buying quality. We fully support this concept of buying clothing to wear again and again, and if looked after, our clothing will be your loyal companion for years to come.
We pride ourselves on the fact that from Day 1 we decided to be a Sustainable, Ethical and Slow fashion brand. It is not easy, nor is it a low cost way to do business. We need brands to turn to Slow Fashion to reduce their carbon footprint.
Brands with Slow Fashion principles look for classic and timeless designs that can be worn again and again for years to come. They care for workers rights ensuring that they work with suppliers who share their vision for an ethical workplace, fair wages and good working environment.
See here for our supply chain.
Not only this, but the fabrics that are chosen are carefully considered not only for the design but for their low impact on the environment.
See here for our fabric library.
Sustainable fashion is about the conscious use of natural resources and the respect of people. Sustainable fashion basically seeks to create an industry that prioritizes not having harmful impacts on the planet, society, or animals over making money.
Ethical fashion is generally defined as a production model that benefits fashion workers. However, its broader and more complete definition says that ethical fashion is concerned with workers and also animal rights. Fashion workers should be empowered and gratified by what they do for a living. At the same time, ethical fashion sustains that keep harming animals for human vanity and clothes is wrong.
Slow fashion is more of a mindset, a way of living. It combines sustainability and ethics and, contrarily to the other two, is not only about production. Slow fashion is also about the consumption and the use of clothes. Slow fashion prioritizes the environment, all people, and animals. It refers to a more conscious way of designing and shopping.
Minimalist fashion means having only clothes and accessories that you love to wear and that can be easily matched to each other thanks to their high versatility, comfort, colors, and style.
Circular fashion creates clothes from natural materials and designs them with the purpose that they can be recycled, upcycled, or even biodegrade at the end of their lifecycle.
In summary, Fast Fashion Is Unsustainable And Unethical. We would never say to not buy from certain brands or go completely fast-fashion free, if that is not something you are passionate about doing. As we always say, sustainability is not just about being 100%. It is not feasible for everyone's lifestyle to be 100% Sustainable, 100% Zero Waste etc. We are far from perfect and no one needs that kind of pressure in their lives!
What you can do is shop with a more conscious mindset. Look at Sustainable Brands, buy Second-Hand, and re-wear what you already have! Challenge yourself to style your clothes in different ways, rather than buying a new outfit for every occasion. When you buy clothes, look for brands that have values that match your own.
Here at This Is Anyo we are on a constant mission to improve our sustainable and ethical practices. We guarantee that our clothing is made to last and won't fall apart at the seams (literally) after the first wear!
Shopping should be and is an enjoyable experience, find your own way to join the Slow Fashion movement. A way that works for you!