The blog

Is our love of fashion sustainable?

Monday 2 November


There appears to be a growing awareness of the impact that the fashion industry has on our environment and it is unsustainable. An interesting documentary has just been released called 'The True Cost', which reveals the impacts of fashion consumption - fashion is the words second biggest polluting industry, second only to oil. What’s more we now have ‘Fashion Revolution Day’ on the 24th April each year to bring people together from throughout the world to challenge the current industry wide system and “demand that fashion becomes a force for good”. Whilst celebrities are also joining the revolution through 'The Green Carpet Challenge (GCC)' initiated by Livia Firth, the objective being to raise the profile of sustainable style.

Over the next few years I think we will see a growing number of social entrepreneurs solving many of the issues involved with the fashion industry. The Kering Group that owns many of the large luxury fashion brands are now taking sustainability to the heart of their agenda and pulling together the industry leaders to engage change. They have recently created an Environmental profit and Loss (E P&L) that makes the invisible impacts of business visible, quantifiable and comparable. Fashion for Change can help the luxury brands to find a sustainable way for fashion lovers to follow a brand’s latest collections by providing an effective luxury recycling service to their customers.

Through Fashion for Change we can address the need for a far greater range of quality second hand clothes for buyers, with ease of purchase and prompt delivery. We can only do this if charities and service providers come together under a combined sales platform. Charities have pressure to reduce their costs and increase demand for their products; we can help them do that. Plus by donating online we can efficiently engage the donor and provide them with a level of transparency that would be too costly in the previous donation model.

The UK Giving Survey 2014 found that the main barrier to donating was not knowing how the money was being used: 70% responded by saying “If I knew how money was directly helping, I would feel more inclined to give to charity”.