It’s not a crime to wear the same outfit time after time. It’s the only way to take a stand against the culture of throwaway fashion that is becoming so prevalent.
It may sound rather worthy but, as consumers, I believe it is our responsibility to know where our clothes are made. The millions who slave away in places like China, Bangladesh and India, churning out goods for big fashion corporations, are often so badly underpaid that they are unable to afford basic living expenses.
It is not just unethical working conditions that are the problem with the modern fast fashion trend. Even if you are indifferent to what goes on thousands of miles away from you, it is also you, the consumer, who suffers as a result. Only in 2012, Greenpeace released their report “Toxic Threads: The Big Fashion Stitch-Up”, which revealed many facilities making cheap clothing for the major high street fashion payers were using hazardous chemicals.
And then there’s the impact on the environment. Continuing to manufacture clothes that are worn only a few times is a huge waste of natural resources. As consumers, if we choose to throw away our clothes after one season that has a big impact on our carbon and water footprints.
When I founded Tom Cridland, my menswear brand, we focused for our first year only on making trousers. When deciding on a second garment to add to my collection, I knew I wanted to create something that was more than simply an item of clothing, but that would lead an industry trend towards protecting our natural resources by making truly durable clothing.
The 30 Year Sweatshirt is a cry for sustainability in the fashion industry. I’ve been so touched by the reaction from the international media to the campaign and I have faith that, together, we can tackle this important issue.