Sustainable Fashion and Ethical Fashion: What Everyone is Talking About and What it Means

I had the opportunity to guest speak on the Orange Blossom Bride podcast. This was my first time speaking on a podcast, so I wanted to share something that has been recently talked about and something not everyone understands. Sustainability in fashion is a new concept designers and retailers are now taking into consideration. In 2019, we are starting to care about things that are bigger than us. While use of minimal straws and plastic cups are good, it’s important to consider what we wear everyday. Because fashion and sustainability aren’t always thought of as the same thing, we never think about the affects of the fashion industry. According to The Fashion Law, “By 2030, it is predicted that the industry’s water consumption will grow by 50 percent to 118 billion cubic meters (or 31.17 trillion gallons), its carbon footprint will increase to 2,791 million tons and the amount of waste it creates will hit 148 million tons.”

Disclaimer: I am not bashing those who wear fast fashion and saying I have never worn it, in fact, while writing this post, I am wearing a J.Crew blazer and H&M dress pants. As I learn more about the negative effects of fast fashion, I have recently started introducing thrifted & sustainable clothing into my wardrobe. My hope is to bring awareness to this movement and inspire those to begin to shop sustainably. A personal goal of mine is to stop shopping fast fashion all together and to only shop at thrift stores and eco & ethically friendly companies. You can find one of my favorite sustainable fashion lines here.

According to Green Strategy, “sustainable fashion can be defined as clothing, shoes and accessories that are manufactured, marketed and used in the most sustainable manner possible, taking into account both environmental and socio-economic aspects. In practice, this implies continuous work to improve all stages of the product’s life cycle, from design, raw material production, manufacturing, transport, storage, marketing and final sale, to use, reuse, repair, remake and recycling of the product and its components.“ In addition to sustainable fashion, ethical fashion looks at the importance of safe working environments for employees.

Today, according to Clara Vuletich on TEDxSydney, we have 4 times as much clothing as our parents had growing up. Today, clothing is more accessible than ever before because of fast fashion pricing and attainability through online shopping. This accessibility and attainability is leading to pollution and poor working environments. While our parents bought a few expensive investment pieces, we buy one night only outfits. We buy a cute dress or jumpsuit, take a few photos to post and then never wear it again.

One way to shop sustainability in fashion is by purchasing off the rack. The Bridal Finery specializes in connecting designer gowns to brides. We source our gowns from designer’s and boutique’s samples directly to the bride. The designer’s gowns are either runway samples, trunk show pieces, or duplicate orders. When you purchase a gown off the rack, there is no production necessary for the gown.

If you do choose to order a new gown from a designer, here is a curated list of designers who ethically produce their gowns: Ines Di Santo, Monique Lhuillier, Sareh Nouri, Reem Acra, Carolina Herrera, Anna Maier, Oscar de la Renta.

To listen to our Orange Blossom Bride podcast featuring sustainable fashion, click here!

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