Fast fashion brands are extremely prominent at the moment. I can't scroll through my Instagram feed without seeing items from retailers like Zara, H&M and Forever 21. However, I recently watched a documentary on Netflix called "The True Cost", which provides an in depth look at the ramifications of the fast fashion industry. One negative effect in particular is that it creates mass amounts of fabric and clothing waste.
According to this documentary, the average American produces about 82 lbs of clothing waste a year, totaling 11 million tons amongst the entire nation. Most people think it's okay to buy items they know they will discard after a couple wears because they donate any unwanted clothing. However, thrift stores unfortunately can only accept about 10% of the clothing that is donated. Whatever is not taken is dumped into landfills, which causes irreparable damage to our environment because fabric cannot naturally decompose.
After watching "The True Cost", I felt disgusted from actually seeing the amount of waste the fast fashion industry produces. Since then, I have tried to refrain from shopping at mass retailers, in addition to being more thoughtful about what I am purchasing, making sure I am only buying items I really, truly love. It's so easy to walk into a fast fashion store and buy a bunch of items you have lack luster feelings about, just because of the low prices.
In addition to really considering what I am buying before I purchase, I am making more of an effort to buy vintage or thrifted items. I am also trying to buy more from small businesses whose products are made in America, like the dress I am wearing in these photos. This dress is from Smak Parlour, a Philadelphia based boutique. They carry various brands, as well as their own line that is produced in LA (this dress is part of that collection). If you're not in the Philadelphia area, they also have a website so you can shop online. They have lots of adorable vintage inspired pieces, so I would definitely recommend checking them out!
The point of this blog post is not to shame anyone who shops fast fashion brands. Like many, I have bought a lot from these retailers in recent years. I just want to create awareness about this issue and encourage everyone to watch this eye opening documentary. We are constantly being bombarded with consumerism in this day and age, so I think we could all use a reminder to stop and and think twice before you buy.
Dress: C/O Smak Parlour
Shoes: Bait Footwear
Location: Seven Magic Mountain (Las Vegas, Nevada)