I’m sure that by now the concept of “sustainability” in the fashion industry isn’t anything new or unheard of, in fact the idea of it has become a part of many brands' values and embedded as the ethical shopping mantra for customers. Fast-fashion is slowly becoming redundant as more consumers swap out cheap, trendy, replicable items for more classic, timeless, well-executed pieces. Now more than ever, customers are more informed about the garments that they’re buying as more people are demanding transparency from brands about the way in which they produce their items. However if you want to buy sustainably and ethically, most of the time they’d come with a higher price tag. Here are some reasons why buying well made garments is better in the long run.
In an era with clothes-purging and Marie Kondo organizing techniques being the norm, it seems that less is more. Fresh new faces are opting for the minimalist lifestyle and for fashion fanatics this means starting with the wardrobe. The idea of a “capsule wardrobe” is one that many are opting for, the idea being a compact wardrobe made up of a combination of items that are versatile and can be worn together to create a number of looks. If customers are buying items with the intention of curating a capsule wardrobe, chances are they're buying fewer items in higher quality which may cost more but will last them for a long time. In the long run these can be considered investment pieces and can definitely be a good base for any wardrobe or other garment to be worn with.
When brands seek out materials that are higher quality and put an emphasis on spending time to individually assemble each garment, rather than mass-producing, chances are these pieces will last longer and age better over time. Sure it may seem unnecessary at the time to fork out a lot of money to buy things that you can get for cheaper at certain stores, but in the long run these items would last longer and maintain their value. If you buy cheap, fast-fashion items they will probably only last you a few washes or eventually go out of style. While investing in classic items that won’t deteriorate, will only get better over-time, and never go out of style, would be the benefit of spending money on well-made garments in the long run.
There are more brands in the market nowadays that have well-made high quality basic items be the essence of the brand. RE/DONE are known for their high quality denims that take things like vintage Levis and upcycle them into new and unique-looking denim, lasting longer and leaving a smaller carbon footprint. Reformation is another brand which started out as a cool, LA-based, sustainable brand which has now become one of the most sought-after and mainstream brands. Sézane is a brand that eliminates the middle-man in production and instead values the production process, seeking out zero waste practices that are ethical and sustainable.
We can see here that today's consumers have never been more informed. People want higher quality clothing that will last them longer and it seems that they’ll be willing to pay the premium. I certainly think it's interesting that customer’s shopping habits are changing in order to keep up with the ever-changing society. I guess we’ll have to see what brands will be able to keep up with them, and which ones won’t make the cut.
Words by Pippa Thouchphong