It's 5pm and I’ve retreated indoors to enjoy a cup of hot water with a slice of lemon and honey. A bit of cosy relaxation after a sunny afternoon spent in the garden pulling up Ivy and Stinging Nettle to expose the glorious dark soil beneath. More space for raised garden beds made from recycled pallets! See our previous article on recycling pallets and DIY here.
Now - - After an attractive avocado led me to lift the 24 September 2020 Waitrose Weekend paper I was very pleased to see on page 3 an article that recommends a way to reduce landfill waste caused by throwaway fashion.
Don’t forget you can recycle clothes too!
In fact there are a number of leading retailers publicising their awareness of fashion and it’s significant contribution to landfill and buyer awareness is on the up. WRAP and the British Guardian found that over 300,000 tonnes of clothing goes to landfill and incineration via household bins. Think - - the African Elephant is the largest land animal and one male adult weighs between 1,800 and 6,300 kg (2 and 7 tons/ 4,000 and 14,000 lb) so 43,000 elephants or 1,200 of the Statue of Liberty! - - That’s a lot of waste.
Speaking of plastic waste and elephants the Guardian has an interesting article about this.
Can we take action?
It turns out there are a few options. Some of which I didn’t know about!
Fashion buy-back service: John Lewis was trialing a which is now suspended due to the COVID pandemic but is a cool idea. Who wouldn't want to sell their used unwanted clothing, knowing it will be responsibly disposed of? Watch this space.
Slow fashion movement: check out this sewing blog where you can get lessons on how to restyle older or unloved items that is said to bring about a satisfaction that brings mental wellbeing and joy. Some retailers have aspirations similar to Waitrose to phase out all non-recyclable plastic from all packaging by 2021.
Make your clothes last longer: wash your clothes in lower temperatures and repair when possible
Swap clothes with friends and family: this can actually be a lot of fun and an interesting way to acquire much coveted clothing. Thank you Claudia Morales for the items you have given me over the course of our friendship!
Explore charity shops: A friend of mine who is a Chemistry teacher shopped for suits at Charity shops near-to-Finchley Road Station and I have to tell you they have some really nice shops. So rather than buy new, buy used that are in great order and shop knowing your hard earned money is going to a great cause like shelter for the homeless or helping sick children.
Quality: above all, when buying new clothes, stick to garments of high quality and avoid clothes that contain plastic materials.
You can learn more
Here’s where you can sell clothes you no longer want: online platforms
Facts on clothes recycling by Clothes aid UK
Reduce clothing waste tips by the Commonwealth Human Ecology Council
Get an overview on Textile facts at Wrap UK and Recycle Week UK
Understand more on the impact of clothing by Traid UK