Organize Your Wardrobe For A Sustainable 2022

Photo by Anastasia Shureya from Pexels

In the United States alone, over 17 million tons of garment materials are wasted each year. Discarded clothing ends up in landfills, contributing to the massive problem of growing refuse. However, most materials can be recycled. You can do your part to limit your contribution to clothing waste by organizing your wardrobe so that it is more sustainable.

Source Local Fashion
The harvesting of materials and transportation of products contributes to carbon emissions. Additionally raw materials may not be collected and used in sustainable ways. But local fashion retailers like Engineered Garments offer a unique selection of clothing produced locally with available materials. Local garment manufacturers also typically create less waste as they don't require large minimums. Small scale production tend to reduce energy usage as well as emissions. And they can dedicate their manufacturing efforts towards fashion that reflects the local community rather than the industry as a whole.

Donate What You Don't Wear
The amount of wasted clothing is shocking especially considering how easily most textiles can be recycled. It's only natural that some your clothes will lose appeal. They may no longer fit, your fashion sense can change, or a garment might be out of season. But rather than throwing something away, ask family and friends if they can use them. Better yet, if the pieces are in exceptional condition, donate them to charity stores. Charity stores will either sell them and use the money for charitable causes or send the clothing to people who need them.

Check Company Values
Not all clothes are made equally, and some of the best-known fashion houses don't necessarily have the best values or follow good sustainability practices. So it becomes impossible for you to impact your sustainability goals if you fail to do the research on the brands you buy from. Don't be fooled by labels like "natural," as this only means the fabric is natural and doesn't mean sustainable. Sustainable clothing means the fabrics are derived from eco-friendly resources, such as sustainably grown fiber crops or recycled materials. They are also typically produced through environmentally friendly manufacturing processes by fairly paid workers. Their production process should also be free from animal by-products and toxic chemicals.

Buy Strategically
No one can deny that shopping for clothes is fun and exciting. But you might be overspending on too many garments and things you don't need. Instead, audit your closet each season and consider buying seasonally for the most cost-effective and sustainable practice. For instance, choose clothing you know you will wear many times over a season, such as a classic coat or cashmere sweater during the winter. Better yet, pass up trends and opt for wardrobe staples that can be worn all year round. Like a pleated skirt that can be paired with a tank top during the summer and worn with knitwear and tights during the cooler months. This will save you money as well as increase sustainability.

Care for Your Clothes
You can extend the life of your clothing go by looking after your garments properly. Be mindful of fabric content and care before when you are looking to buy. Always read the labels about washing and try to purchase clothing that can be washed at a lower temperature. Washing your clothes in hot water and too frequently could damage the material and shorten it's life span. Be careful not to use more water and energy than is necessary. Fortunately a number of soap manufacturers offer a range of washing liquids that work well in cold water which reduces your carbon footprint while conserving water and electricity. 

If you want to make the transition to a more sustainable wardrobe, start with small steps that you can easily achieve.

This is a contributed post.


Midnight Cowgirl said...

Building a more sustainable wardrobe is something I'm working on. I usually check ThredUp before buying something and have been able to score some great deals.

Jackie Harrison said...

I thank you for bringing this important subject to our attention knowledge in how we do not consider in the waste of things and how we are damaging our earth. No one things of the garment material is wasted.