How To Build A Sustainable Wardrobe

Let’s be honest: we all want to participate in #hotgirlsummer but don’t want to break the bank.

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On top of that, there’s a little voice in my head telling me not to buy into every trend I see on Instagram. After all, it’s called a trend for a reason! And once it’s out of style, I find myself not wearing my summer wardrobe a year later, even if all the pieces still fit, and feeling guilty for buying so much in the first place. So, here are a few ways to buy into the summer trends, build a sustainable wardrobe without hurting your bank account and the environment!

Thrifting and buying vintage!

thrifting
Image by @kayteeyou on Instagram

 

Thrifting is an amazing way to give clothes a new home! Depending on where you thrift shop, there are tons of options and sizes to help you expand your search. Thrift and vintage stores also have clothes ranging from a few months ago to a few years ago. As we all see today, many trendy pieces that are in style right now were popular in the early 1990s and 2000s. Chances are, you’ll find some cute halter tops, funky print shorts, and patterned button-ups that someone donated because they thought that style would never come back! Note: vintage stores can be a little more expensive than thrift stores, but you’ll find some high-quality classics that are hard to turn down!

Upcycle your winter pieces into summer clothes

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I know this is what I’ll be doing. Unfortunately, I over-invested in crewnecks, long sleeves, and turtle necks. But not all these clothes are essentials to what I need for winter next year. Additionally, it’s easy to crop pieces, cut sleeves off, and just restitch the hem! It doesn’t have to be perfect, but it’s cute to wear clothes that you customized yourself and are unique to you!

Depop, Poshmark, and ThredUp: Thrift shopping on easy-mode

depop thrift shopping
Image by @depop on Instagram

Thrift stores can be a little overwhelming and, on top of that, the pandemic has made it much harder to shop in public safely. Tthe next best thing is Depop, Poshmark, and ThredUp! These sites are great because you can easily filter through clothes by searching for exactly what you want, putting in your size, and even the brands you love! Since you’re buying second-hand clothes online, the description usually includes any imperfections such as stains, rips…etc. But most of the time, I come across clothes that have been rarely worn by the original owner, hence they’re in perfect condition and are much less expensive than what you could buy in the stores. The best part is that many of these clothes are posted recently so you may find something trending now simply because a seller didn’t fit into them or didn’t like. Depop, Poshmark, and ThredUp are great options for shopping from home and easily finding what you like. This holy trinity will save you this season!

Try a capsule wardrobe

sustainable wardrobe
Image by @slow.choices on Instagram

This idea can be a little intimidating but stick with me! Capsule wardrobes focus on picking a combination of basics and statement pieces that you can re-wear into multiple outfits over a long period of time. The point of capsule wardrobing is to build a closet of versatile clothes and to limit the number of pieces overall. You can, ideally, capsule wardrobe for your whole life, or pick a limited period of time to try it out and ease into it. With the rise of TikTok, and increased social media usage overall, we’re running through trends every day. So capsule wardrobes can help you curb that need to buy something new. An example of a great capsule wardrobe is to pick a base color – usually black – find neutrals in staple pieces like shirts and jackets, pick a few patterns you love, and focus on finding what can be layered. Then you can add a few accessories, like sustainable jewelry and bags, that either function as a statement piece or can match with anything.

Shop from sustainable brands

sustainable wardrobe
Image by @kulfi.beauty on Instagram

Last but not least, find ethically-made stores to shop from. Though these places can be pricy, you’re likely to land on high-quality pieces while knowing that the company is doing everything they can to produce clothes ethically. There are many levels to sustainably and ethically-made brands. Whether that can be reducing carbon emissions or paying workers fair wages, you can search for brands here to see the ranking of thousands of shops! Jetset Times SHOP sells ethically-made and sustainable pieces, sourced from all over the world! Some of my other personal favorite smaller stores are seven seas swimwear, create and so, and kulfi! Many small businesses prioritize sustainability so shopping small has a bigger impact than you could imagine!

Shrusti Goswami

Social Media Associate

Shrusti is a passionate writer and poet. You can often find her drinking a cup of coffee and finding new places to go with her friends and family. After college, it’s her dream to keep traveling the world and bring diverse stories to the big screen.

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