Friday, 27 April 2018

Fashion Revolution Week: Ethical Fashion Resources



I thought I would share a few resources that have helped me over the last year or so as I have learnt more about sustainable fashion why we need to slow down our wardrobes. If you have any resources of your own I would love to hear about them so please do leave me a comment!

Books:

To Die For by Lucy Siegle

If you want to know exactly why it is so important to join the sustainable fashion movement then this is the book for you. This book is an extensive look into every aspect of the fashion industry and it's supply chain. Siegle talks about garment workers, cotton pickers, pollution in rivers from dye houses, animal abuse, child labour and so much more giving the reader and in depth view into the huge problems of the fashion industry. This is a must read for everyone.

Slow Fashion by Safia Minney

This book is a great resource to learn all about the slow fashion movement. Why we should do it and how we can do it. It is a really interesting read and full of great tips, advice and articles all about ethical, sustainable fashion and how to build your own sustainable wardrobe.

Slave to Fashion by Safia Minney

This book is an eyeopening account of the modern slavery that goes on within the garment industry. Full of interviews, articles and microdocumentaries with the men, women and children who are enslaved by the fashion industry, this is a powerful read and helps us to understand exactly why we need to change our buying habits and the effect they are having on thousands of people.



Documentaries:

The True Cost

This documentary is on Netflix and a definite must watch for everyone. Like Siegle's book it goes into all the different aspects of the fashion industry and teaches us about the true cost of making the garments we wear.

Udita

This documentary is on Youtube and a really interesting insight into the lives of garment workers who will no longer tolerate the appalling way they are treated. The documentary follows those who have formed unions and are campaigning for a living wage, fair treatment and compensation for factory closures of accidents. It's only an hour and 15 minutes and really worth a watch.




Shopping:

People Tree

This is one of my favourite Fair Trade and ethical brands. Founder Safia Minney, developed the first organic and Fair Trade clothing supply chain so you know that each item has been carefully and thoughtfully made to benefit the planet and those who make it. The quality of their clothes is amazing and they have some beautiful designs. Check them out if you are needing something new for your wardrobe.

Thought Clothing

Another favourite ethical brand these guys are well known for using more sustainable materials like bamboo to make their underwear, socks and tights. I have a couple of pairs of their socks and I can honestly say they are the best socks I have ever owned. They last for ages and stay soft and comfy for years. There clothes are also really gorgeous and made of some interesting materials like hemp.   


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Monday, 23 April 2018

Fashion Revolution Week 2018


Today marks the beginning of Fashion Revolution Week. A week dedicated to bringing to light the awful effects of the fast fashion industry on garment workers. Each year this week takes place over the anniversary of the Rana Plaza collapse where 1,138 people died and another 2,500 were injured, making it the fourth largest industrial disaster in history. This week is about putting the garment workers back into our clothes, remembering that somebody made these items we wear and they most likely weren't paid properly for it. 

The fast fashion industry is not only destroying our planet but it is also destroying lives. Thousands of garment workers, mostly women, all over the world are forced to work long hours for little or often no pay. The rate at which clothes are now consumed means they have to be made quickly and cheaply leaving very little money for the people who actually make them. In Bangladesh, garment workers are campaigning to be paid the living wage, just £50 a month, but they do so at great cost to themselves and their families. It is not unusual to be sacked without any warning if you are seen to cause problems and often women are beaten and even arrested simply for asking for a basic human right. Many steps have been taken by brave garment workers who have set up unions and campaigned for equal rights, a living wage and compensation when a factory closes or there is an accident, but there is still so much more to do and a lot of it is down to us. 


Will we stand with these garment workers who ask for no more than just enough to survive? Will we allow ourselves to continue to be seduced by fast fashion? We all know that buying new cheap clothes will not make us happy once the tags are off, but it can be hard not to be seduced by advertising that promises a happier you if you only buy one more pair of jeans. We have to take control over this. We must learn that happiness does not come from a new pair of shoes or a dress. We must ask ourselves where these clothes I am buying have come from and who made them and if they only cost £5 how can that give a fair wage to the person who made them? We must choose to make more conscious decisions, to completely change our relationship to clothes and to learn to buy less and to buy better. Once we stop filling our wardrobes with hundreds of clothes we do not need the argument that Fairtrade fashion is unaffordable becomes irrelevant. If we buy only what we need and choose ethical, well made items that will last over cheap and quick we could all change millions of lives. 


So will you stand with garment workers? Will you ask the question who made my clothes to your favourite brands? Will you demand transparency in the supply chain? Will you buy less and better? 


We can all make a huge difference in this world simply by how we choose to spend our money. Join the Fashion Revolution this week and help change the world.     
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Sunday, 22 April 2018

Earth Day 2018



After a beautiful week of sunshine and warmer weather than Hawaii (yep on Thursday the temperature in England was higher than that in Hawaii!!!)  it's not hard to appreciate our beautiful earth. We spent this week getting out into the sunshine as much as possible enjoying a trip to Otmoor nature reserve for our date night this week, eating dinner outside and going for a Saturday walk with a picnic. When you're in those beautiful places it makes you realise just how important it is that we take care of our world. This year Earth Day Network are encouraging people to look at their plastic consumption and to see how we can reduce it. Our oceans are now full of plastic that won't biodegrade for hundreds of years, it's mind blowing to think that every toothbrush, every bottle of coke, every sweet packet it still out there in the world somewhere most likely poisoning our oceans. When we throw things away in this society we like to think we have passed the responsibility to someone else, that it is gone but the truth is we are all responsible for our waste. It is no longer enough just to recycle our plastic we need to reduce the amount of waste we produce in the first place.

This Earth Day I am reminding myself to be more proactive in the fight to save our seas, I want to look at every area of my life and to see where I can reduce my plastic waste and I really want to encourage you to do the same. I know it's not easy and when you're tired and fed up doing your weekly shop it can be hard not to pick the easiest option in the plastic container but if we all work towards reducing our plastic, refusing to buy products in plastic and asking our supermarkets to reduce their packaging then eventually it will become the norm. Reducing waste is not just something for eco warriors to do it is something we all need to do if we want to continue enjoying this beautiful planet.

I hope you all have a wonderful Earth Day enjoying the sunshine. 
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Friday, 20 April 2018

A Blenheim Birthday

Isn't this weather we are having wonderful? I don't know about where you are but Spring has finally come to Oxford and we are now being treated to blue skies and warm sunshine. Unfortunately the sunshine didn't appear for my birthday on Sunday but we decided to brave the showers and take a picnic to Blenheim Palace. We aren't ones to be frightened by the cold or a little bit of rain and luckily we managed a picnic and a lovely walk to see the all the Spring flowers before the showers started.







We began in the Pleasure Gardens and were treated to the most beautiful cherry blossom. The cold weather through March seemed to frighten the blossom away everywhere in Oxford so I was super excited to see these beautiful pink trees.  







We then decided to go into the Butterfly House. I love this place but it is usually very busy at the weekends but the cold weather must have frightened everyone away because it was practically empty. We made our way around marvelling at the beautiful butterflies and birds and one little butterfly decided to land on my arm. 



After lunch we made our way into the formal gardens and went to see the Winston Churchill Memorial which we have never seen before. We were greeted to a carpet of sunshine yellow daffodils which made us feel, despite the cold, that it really was Spring. 


We finished off our walk at the cascade which was another part of Blenheim we hadn't been to. It was a lovely day despite the clouds and it felt so nice to get out into nature again. I can't wait for more Spring adventures now the weather seems to have finally warmed up. 

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