It is that time of year again and the party season is almost upon us, but it’s going to look a little different this year. Usually it’s the time of year that our social calendars start to spring back to life, we start to feel in ‘the spirit’ and all of a sudden that family member who hasn’t kept in touch all year wants us at their annual festive gathering. But with COVID-19 reaping havoc with us all, the possibilities of indulging in the glitz and glam of the season are increasing dwindling down to doubtful hopes. But non-the-less, we make do and carry on! It only takes two to party, right?
In past years social events have had us all reaching for the seasonal glitter clad glad-rags, or for our wallets to go out and buy some new ones because, you know, it’s Christmas. And despite not having anywhere to go, and even in the midst of a climate crisis, it’s probably more important than ever before to dress up and feel your best – even if the most happening place you visit is your living room.
But whether you dress up or dress down in some PJ’s we all have to be mindful of our actions. Christmas 2017 witnessed an overall rise in online fast fashion shopping whilst the high street’s figures dwindled. The online fast fashion giant ASOS report a 30% sales increase within the last quarter of the year, whilst one of it’s online fast fashion competitors, Boohoo.com, gained a 25% increase for the same period.
“With a clear understanding of their target customers and ability to capitalize on demand for stylish, trend-led products and demand for convenient delivery options, it is unsurprising that these retailers performed so well,” commented Sarah Johns, Retail Analyst at GlobalData in a statement.
The climate crisis is real, and as we all now know since the premiere of the BBC documentary “Stacey Dooley investigates: Fashion’s Dirty Secrets”, and a plethora of documentaries since released, our appetite for a quick, cheap and easy fashion fix is actually extremely harmful to the world in which we live. So, what are the more sustainable options to dress to the nines this Christmas? How can we feel and look our best at a price that won’t send Santa flying back to the north pole?
Up-cycling is one of the most sustainable, affordable and impressive ways of glamming any sense of style. From the simple acts of adorning a jumper in jewels taken from an old garment to the more advance level of tailoring those baggy worn out trousers into a clean-cut marvel of a pair. There are endless ways to create a new outfit out of what you (or your partner) already have and countless ways to breathe new life into your festive style, and ypu don’t have to be a whiz with a needle either. For example, take a look at how to make this unique up -cycled trench coat, pictured below, here.
Swap, Share or Hire
Another great way to keep your fashion derived negative environmental impact down is to share what you already have and to use what others are sharing. It doesn’t have to be through an organisation or brand, just gather your guys, gals and pals to rifle through one another’s wardrobes – observing social distancing of course.
Eventually, after some questionable discoveries, you can almost be guaranteed to find something of use or something you can add to what you already have planned to wear. It is just about taking some time out and thinking about if you really need to buy another garment to wear just one time. Instead, think about what you can be wearing another one time.
Or if nobody-else’s style can live up to your own (we see you fashionista), hire yourself an outfit instead with companies such as Chic-by- Choice.com/en
Buy Secondhand and Vintage
If after, considering all of the above, you just can’t resist a cheeky shopping trip, try and make it a sustainable one and hunt through your local independent secondhand outlets and vintage shops. Not only will this help contribute to your local economy and to the welfare of the small business owner (which is sustainable in itself), it will also provide you with a selection of cost effective designer classics or unique and quirky finds that will make you the angel of the dance.
Remember, textiles are around for life, not just for Christmas.