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I’ve always wanted to share my poster presentation:

Fast Fashion it’s a term that fashion retailers use to define a trend in which clothes move from the ramps to the stores in the fastest time possible in order to be able to capture the market.

To understand the concept of fast fashion is actually to think of it as having similarities to the concept of fast food.

Fast Fashion’s similarities to fast food are:

  • Fast
  • Super- cheap (cheap fabric – polyester and cotton)
  • Addictive (shopaholism)
  • Unsustainable (because of the bad quality fabric form which clothes are made)
  •  Throwaway (a trend to worn a clothing a few times in favor of new cheap garments which themselves will also go out of fashion and be thrown away in a matter of months)

A Cambridge University study reports that in 2006, people were buying a third more clothes than they were in 2002, because women clothing prices have fallen a lot.  Brands began competing against each other for market share by introducing more lines per year at lower costs. In a result, now fashion houses offer up to 18 collections a year while traditionally most fashion labels have produced two main collections a year – spring/summer and autumn/winter.

Problems that Fast fashion causes:

  1. The squeeze on the workers. Buyers pressure factories to deliver products with ever-shorted lead times. Most factories just don’t have tools and expertize to manage this effectively, that is why workers are forced to work overtime, to suffer abuse, bad food and a very poor pay;
  2. Environmental damage. More clothing is shipped and flown from the Far East to Europe than ever before and the life cycle of these garments is decreasing; Textile faces problems such as synthetic products will not decompose, while woolen garment do decompose and produce methane, which contributes to global warming;
  3. Child labor. For e.g. child labor used in manufacturing a line for Primark.
  4. The use of hazardous chemicals. Cotton is widely used in worlds fabric production, but growing it uses ~23% of the world’s insecticides and 10% of the world’s pesticides. These are chemicals which can be dangerous for the environment and harmful for farmers who grow it. Also hazardous chemicals (lead, nickel, chromium…) are used in the textile industry for dyeing or soften them. These chemical can be toxic, damage our skin…
  5. Waste. For e.g. the Arial Sea in Central Asia has shrunk to just 15% of its former volume, due to the vast quantity of water required for cotton production and dying.
  6. Animal cruelty.Many animals are famed to supply fur fashion.How could we solve these problems?

A solution to The Fast Fashion problems is – Ethical Fashion.

Ethical Fashion is socially and environmentally conscious.  Social issues include fair trade, fair pay and transparency. Environmental issues may include carbon miles, pesticides used in farming to grow cotton, dying methods, water usage during production and posproduction.

Yes, we can look good, be stylish and be environmentally, socially conscious.

Criteria for Ethical Fashion:

  1. Countering fast, cheap fashion.
  2. Defending fair wages, working conditions and workers’ rights.
  3. Supporting sustainable livelihoods.
  4. Addressing toxic pesticide and chemical use.
  5. Using Eco-friendly fabrics and components.
  6. Minimizing water usage.
  7. Recycling and addressing energy efficiency and waste.
  8. Promoting sustainability standards for fashion.
  9. Defending animal rights.

Ethical Fashion is important because if we start to better manage of production, manufacturing, management of workers and consumer behavior with respect for people, planet and profit, the sector can provide social, environmental and economic change for the better.

“… People are being trained by media to perfect consumers of mass manufactures rubbish.”

Vievienne Westwood