BY LISA S.T. DOSS
The evidence is in the fiber! How many articles of clothing are not faring well after one year? Do you notice the remnants after removing a load of laundry from the dryer? Most likely, the two indications point to a petroleum-based, synthetic polyester! As a plastic, it’s not biodegradable nor does it survive as a regularly worn fiber. As shoppers, we cannot help buying inexpensive clothing that includes great color patterns or quotes. Polyester is the reason our drawers and closets have little space remaining to add yet one more garment. We know just by assessing the material, quantity is not necessarily measured in quality; therefore, it’s time to invest in quality fibers!
What is Slow Fashion?
The return home from a day of boutique, consignment and retail chain shopping leads to a mixed bag of pleased and questionable purchases. We have outfits that fit well and are comfortable, while other items eventually end up in the far corner of the closet or at the bottom of the folded stack. How many items still have tags attached or last worn in the dressing room? Our well-made, fashionable clothing often takes a special occasion to don. Perhaps, it’s because a large number of exposable apparels suit our day-to-day needs. It’s time to make changes!
- Start buying name brands that regularly fit your body and make you feel great!
- Smaller companies often stand behind strong ethical policies from backing the product to the quality of the fiber.
- Be mindful of labels and choose to not purchase synthetic fibers.
- Intentionally look at the quality of the fabric!
- Stop hoarding poorly made items that can transition to a rag in a year!
- Don’t give up on the garment. Some manufacturers offer to repair damaged items, such as outdoor wear, backpacks and bootmakers.
What are Quality Plant Fibers?
A new label to look out for is called, “GOTS,” which stands for “Global Organic Textile Standard.” In addition to promising the use of organic plants, the certification also guarantees a green standard, comprising of less energy usage and water, and fair treatment of employees and production methods.
Shoppers can find the label in the following fibers:
Hemp: With the frequency of wearing hemp, it becomes increasingly softer. Three times more durable than cotton and maintains the body’s coolness in summer and comfort in winter. The fiber is resistant to UV rays, mold and mildew, and absorbs carbon dioxide. Plants require small amounts of water, no pesticides, and grow quickly.
Linen: As a durable and significantly soft material made from the flax plant, it acts as an insulator in warm climates. The plant can grow without pesticides in poor soil conditions while using little water.
Organic Cotton: Since cotton is a pesticide-dependent crop resulting in harming fish and wildlife due to water pollution, farmers changed the biodiversity in manufacturing techniques.
The transition to organic resulted in a healthier fiber for those who have sensitive skin or allergies.
Housing a large number of natural fibers leads to the ultimate environmental conditions for moths and their larvae. They thrive in dark, warm rooms. Spotting a moth flying around a closet may lead to a horrifying finding – an infestation.
A holey garment requires placement in a freezer-safe, sealable bag. Larvae will die after 48 hours in the freezer.
Try the following strategies to keep your clothes moth free:
- Use red cedarwood rings, hangers and balls as an effective deterrent.
- Hang dried herb sachets made from lavender, rosemary and thyme in dark areas, such as closets, drawers and cupboards. Moths detest strong fragrances!
Invest time cleaning out your closet to keep the clothes that make you feel great! Ask yourself, “How does it make me feel?” “Is it comfortable?” “Does it fit well” and “When was the last time I wore it?”
Beyond the decisions to discard, donate or sell, consider letting go of sentimental items, such as maternity clothing, formal dresses, gowns and your wedding dress! Once the closet contains only the essential items, think about a stress-free dressing experience to choose garments that fit your body perfectly!