Ethical Element

In light of last week’s discussion about sustainability in fashion with Meghan Evans, I took her advice and started to watch The True Cost. Not that it got especially intense, but it most definitely toed the line of disturbing. It is a shame that we westerners will turn the other way for an H&M “bargain”. It feels gross, almost like an episode out of Black Mirror.

Being so close to bedtime, I had to break up the viewing. I cannot even watch Law and Order before bed and that stuff is fiction. Even though I switched over to season four of Gilmore Girls, I still felt haunted by the stories presented in The True Cost.

Until I finish watching it and subsequently writing about the documentary, I thought I would plant the seed of the how to maintain a more ethical closet. (Full disclosure: The below is not my image; however it has been passed along so many times that I could not trace the originator.)

ethical pyramid

How do I stack up against the pyramid?

  1. My husband can attest that I take very good care of the clothing that is already in my closet. Nothing is left on the floor and as for the stuff living in drawers, my OCD has driven me to fold it and organize it in a way that I can easily see and access options. (He can also share the story about that time we took one large suitcase on vacation and he decided to bring back the fish he caught in said suitcase. The very suitcase in which my vacation clothes (his too) were packed. Initially sitting on the Gulf Coast tarmac and then on the Atlanta tarmac. Did I mention that he did not fill me in on this until we were past security and in the airport bar? I’m not still salty about this or anything…)
  2. My Shopping Moratorium 2018 effort has illuminated how much consumption in which I indulge. Spoiler alert: I have only succeed in one of the eight months of 2018. It has been an eye-opener but by reporting back to the blog, I have felt more accountable. Just being more conscientious about my habits has supported my efforts in cutting down.
  3. On the other hand, I don’t think that everything I buy is high quality. While I refuse to shop at the stores notoriously known as fast fashion (Forever 21, Zara, H&M) I have been guilty of the Gap or Banana Republic purchase. Meghan was right when she mentioned that it is especially difficult to shop ethically when you already face the tall challenge.
  4. I am all about thrifting on eBay, Thredup, Poshmark, or TheRealReal; however I do not know that this is what the originator of the pyramid meant. The shipping and handling and subsequent implications on the environment may negate the positive effects of shopping second hand. In this case at least for how I shop vintage, it is a matter of socially ethical versus environmentally ethical.
  5. Other than shopping Meghan Evans, I do not shop ethical brands – that I know of. Please feel free to share suggestions.


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