Environment Good to Know

Secondhand September

Written by ecoCaledon

Image source: Random Acts of Green

From start to finish, the fashion industry has a significant and often underestimated impact on our planet and accounts for 8% of global climate change. SURPRISED? We were!

From growing and creating the fibres, through product manufacturing, to the eventual shipping of products to stores – the fashion industry is indeed one of the most polluting industries globally doing direct harm  to our forests, our oceans, our soil and our air. In addition, in many factories, unacceptably poor and often toxic working conditions negatively impact the health and well-being of the people who make our textiles, clothes and shoes – Every Day is Earth Day. 

Fast Fashion, in particular, has a detrimental impact on the environment. According to Random Acts of Green, an article in the Sustainable Fashion Forum defined fast fashion asinexpensive, cheaply made clothing rapidly produced by mass-market retailers in response to the latest and most popular trends. Fast fashion is literally designed to fall apart and is a large contributor to throwaway culture and overconsumption.”

Addressing the environmental and social impact of the fashion industry requires collective efforts from consumers, brands, and policymakers. By reevaluating our shopping habits and advocating for sustainability and ethical practices, we can contribute to positive change in the industry and work toward a more sustainable future.

Looking to make a positive change? Have you heard of Secondhand September

According to The Market Bags, similar to other planet-loving events, Secondhand September asks us to reconsider how we can be sustainable and tread more lightly on our beautiful planet through the clothes we put on every day.

Created by Oxfam International, Secondhand September is meant to be a challenge for consumers and an antidote to both Fashion Week and the onset of autumn shopping. “…by recirculating our clothes – buying, wearing and donating second hand – we can help to reduce the demand for new clothes. And this could in turn help to reduce the damage to our planet.” – Oxfam International

Ready to give it a shot? You can start by making a pledge to be a second hand shopper. Check out these suggestions by Random Acts of Green:

Shop Vintage or Consignment – shopping vintage or consignment is a great way to find quality and most likely higher-end brands for a discounted price. If you are in the market to make a little money on your own higher-quality garments, a consignment shop allows you to make a small cut of the profits. 

Repair or DIY Upcycle – Rather than tossing a perfectly good item in the trash you can always try mending items yourself or having them altered or fixed by someone who can – find a local Repair Cafe in your community. You can also transform something you already have into the item you were looking for with a DIY Upcycle. Check out @anne_upcycled on Instagram. 

Rent or Borrow – You can rent or borrow items you need from a friend, library, service, or peer-to-peer network. Next time you are looking for an outfit that you don’t want to buy and only wear once try a rental shop, there are a number of great ones in Toronto.

Clothing Swap – Host or attend a clothing swap to help redistribute items locally. Typically clothing swaps are organized amongst friends -clothing and accessories are dropped off and sorted and become someone else’s new treasure.

Last but definitely not least, CONSUME LESS! Try buying only what you need and nothing more. 

We would love to see some of your AWESOME secondhand finds? Snap a pic and tag @ecocaledon or send us an email at info@ecocaledon.org.

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