In buying clothes, as with everything we bring into your home, we want to know about our purchases. To know that they are caring for people in the production process, are made to last so they stay out of landfill, and are not harming the environment in other ways either. That looks like knowing about the production process, where they’re made and by whom. It also looks like buying quality items that will last well as that’s a huge part of caring for the planet. 6% of the trash in New York City is clothing and that can be avoided by buying well made items that last, can be repaired ongoingly, and passed on.
This can often feel like it’s going to mean more spending, but it doesn’t have to.
The average American in the last 30 years has spend less on clothing but on MORE pieces of clothing, adding average of 5 new items a month. (via risk-management firm Deloitte)
If we can simply take the money that’s already being spent and spend it on fewer items we can triple our per item spend, and still buy 1-2 new items a month. By spending more, we can buy better made, thus reducing our need to buy so much. It’s a method that really does work.
TIPS TO HELP WITH SPENDING:
Have a clothing budget! When you’re spending more per item it can be a hard transition but if you can see it in the context of a budget it’s a very different thing.
Shop Second hand! When I buy second hand clothes i’m not so bothered by where they’ve come from. They’re already in circulation so my biggest goal is using them more and caring for them well. Read my tips HERE.
Clear out and organise what you have! We can often think we need things we don’t because we’re not using what we have!
BRANDS WE LOVE AND ACTUALLY SHOP:
1. PACT (US) – Certified Organic cotton and certified fairtrade made, pact is great for basics. It’s my favourite underwear for all the family!
2. ABLE (US) – This is one of the places I love shopping the most. It’s beyond a certification and bringing change in all
they day. From empowering women, to publishing wages, and making really well made items. They are also bringing down prices thoughtfully in 2021 and bringing more size inclusivity which I love seeing as it can be a struggle in the “ethical clothing” realm.
3. Ethical Superstore – Another curated collection of everything from chocolate to garden tools but this section is all apparel and jewellery from some great well selected brands like People Tree all in one place.
4. Thought Clothing (UK) – I found Thought for socks made fro recycled materials but we’ve come to love them for a lot more! Their paper bag trousers and dungarees are on my list.
5. Wearth London – Another brilliant curated collection from various ethically sourced and created brands. You can search by more specific value which is helpful!
6. Pela Vision (worldwide shipping) Our go to for sungrlasses and blue light glasses that are biodegradable, and B Corp made.
7. Nisolo (US) These are shoes built to last, made ethically and classically timeless. They’re pricey, but worth a few pairs of shoes that won’t last as long. We both own the Chelsea boots among other things.
8. Rothys – If you’re reading this, I’m probably wearing my Rothys. They’re probably the most comfortable shoes I own! I had heard about them for a long time but once I finally looked into them I was even more impressed by what I found. They’re taking plastic bottles out of oceans to make shoes, and they are machine washable. Win win! You can get $20 off HERE.
9. Jojo Maman Bebe (UK) This is a great one for new kids and maternity clothes in the UK. It’s a certified B Corp.
10. Boden (UK + US) A family run company that’s been around for years caring about employees from the beginning. Traditionally English meets classic stylish, it’s one we love for kids new clothes when we need them
11. Sancho Shop (worldwide shipping) – More than just clothing and a wonderful collection of so much. Sancho’s is a Black owned and beautifully curated shop of thoughtfully sourced, ethically made clothes.
12. Organic Basics (worldwide shipping) – My top choice for well made black leggings that aren’t see through have lasted me so well! Their move towards regenerative agriculture is exactly what I want to see be the impact of the clothes I buy, I’m more and more impressed by them.
13. Mutha.Hood(worldwide shipping) – Muthahood is a mother run apparel line and curated collection of educational and empowering accessories, childrens toys, and other items. It’s one of my go to places for gifting and everything is sourced well and shipped in compostable and paper packaging.
14. Boody (UK, US, Australia) underwear and basics, their bamboo scoop neck and bodysuit are my two favourite pieces. Their scoop neck is a staple in my wardrobe and looks new after 4 years and two pregnancies! (It’s not maternity just well made and resilient!)
15. Nudies Jeans (worldwide shipping) – When Jared first bought Nudies I nearly threw up at the price; however, after 8 years he’s still wearing the same pair. After a couple of (free) repairs they still look great. Organic cotton. Ethically made. Free repairs for life. The mission is true sustainability. It’s a brand we love!
16. Everlane(worldwide shipping) I’ve stepped back as an affiliate for Everlane after some questions not on their sourcing, and eco and ethical practices in production but in their approaches to corporate employees in 2020. However I’m less of a boycotter and more of someone who always looks for the best option for each person. And I know Everlane has been the route into more thoughtful shopping for hundreds of you and whatever questions I have they are better than the usual highstreet and fast fashion brands in some areas. So for that reason I leave them on the list if they’re the place that helps anyone start or make possible their journey. The link I’ve shared is a not affiliate but a refer a friend link which does let me get some credit to gift clothing/credit to others but I do not make money from the sales.
17. Christy Dawn(worldwide shipping) – (Use my link for $30 off) The most pricey of the items on this list, but in their own words: “Each dress is created in a way that Honors Mother Earth, and is crafted using either organic cotton or sustainable upcycled fabric. Most of our dresses are sewn by our very own team in Los Angeles, and a small portion are sewn in India as part of our Farm-to-Closet fibershed.” The pieces are stunning and they’re a much more size inclusive option which is very needed.
18. All Birds(worldwide shipping) – Brilliant gym, walking and everyday shoes made from cruelty free merino wool (have a google if you want to know why that counts!) They can go in the washing machine for ease, I’ve had mine for years and they look new. LOVE. And I always love a B Corp certified company.
19. Zkanos Socks (US) My top choice of socks. They’re a small family run company that make beautiful socks from cotton and wool, and they are high quality enough that they can be darned and repaired and have a much longer life.
20. Patagonia (worldwide shipping) One of the original ethical brands that makes clothes to last, ethically, from great materials and is always pushing forward. We have the kids jackets and they look new after 2 kids each wearing them for years!
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