Out With the New & In With the Old

I’ve lost count of what year I’m on since I made my first pledge, ‘No New Clothes For A Year’.

It’s definitely become easier, second nature I suppose for someone who repairs and sells vintage clothing for a living. My new clothing ban has also extended to family who voluntarily request second-hand goods from sites like DePop and Etsy for Christmas. I’m proud to say that both daughters are regular subscribers to preloved sites and this therefore extends to my grandchildren who also received nearly new toys as pressies this year.

Why then does the message to purchase second-hand not reach the vast majority of shoppers? Judging by the volume of traffic jamming up our local retail park I reckon ‘buy better buy less’ is way down the New Year Resolution list. Shopping doesn’t have to equal consuming if we first conserve what we already have and circulate existing goods.

Where’s the fun trawling shops rammed full of bargain hunters, searching frenziedly through rails of clothes you don’t particularly need or want? Then having to negotiate car parks of impatient shopaholics only to spend hours sitting in tailbacks. There is an alternative that offers so much more.

Buying second-hand gives a better guarantee of individuality, especially if you purchase vintage – who wants to turn up to the gig and find another couple of party-goers wearing the same gear?

The majority of re-worn clothing is cheaper than its original cost, the few exceptions being labelled designer goods that hold their price tag due to rarity. It’s a win win situation when the cost of saving the planet keeps your wardrobe bill down.

Having a fashion conscience brings its own rewards. Knowing the clothes you are wearing won’t be adding to landfill isn’t the only plus. When we stop to consider the slave labour and poor working conditions afforded to so many garment workers across the globe, our actions may seem small but mean so much more to those suffering for fast fashion.

Personally, I love the idea of keeping traditions alive, especially creative pursuits and mending clothing can be therapeutic as well as thrifty. The rise of visible mending techniques means being able to add your own signature to favourite items of clothing, almost a badge of honour to show how much you care.

I’ll be knocking 10% Off All items in my Etsy Shop from NYE through to Twelfth Night on 5th Jan. That date traditionally brings Christmas to an end, the day by which all decorations should be taken down. Maybe it’s a good way to begin a wardrobe transformation, rather than out with the old, in with the new, lets strip things back and return to a simpler way of life. Less is more.