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Detox your wardrobe

FROM PSYCHOLOGIES MAGAZINE

Detox your wardrobe: detox your mind

Alicia Taylor, co-founder of eco fashion website Gather&See, explains how to detox your clothing as well as your conscience

30 July 2014 - by Alicia Taylor

Our wardrobes speak volumes about our personalities and frame of mind. We have all been there, pulling items out of our wardrobes at a rate of knots surrounded by piles of clothes and yet feeling like we having nothing to wear. The dominance of fast fashion on the high street means that we now own more items of clothing than ever before.

There is no better time than the present to detox your wardrobe - here are our top tips to help you on your way:

  1. DO SOME WARDROBE WEEDING

Put aside some time to go through your wardrobe and remove anything you haven’t worn for the past year – you will be surprised how many items there are. Weigh up your attachment to the item (some sentimental pieces you may never want to part with) and put a pile aside of things you want to let go. 

  1. RECYCLE

Once you have sorted that pile, don’t bin it - the UK already throws £25 million of clothes away a year into landfill - instead, make sure all items are clean and in good condition and donate to your local charity or clothing bank. Items that can’t be reworn are sent to recycling plants.

  1. MAKE DO AND MEND

Over the past generation the skill of sewing has dramatically declined. We now tend to discard clothes where a simple reconstruction alteration or even a quick fix can reinvigorate them. Voila, what once seemed old and sad is now new and interesting. If you don’t have the time or patience, find your local seamstress; it will be cheaper and more rewarding than you know.

  1. KICK THE CHEAP CLOTHING HABIT

The social and environmental impact of cheap clothing are well documented. When you buy a cheap piece of clothing, ask yourself how it came to be so cheap in the first place? Feel good that you are not supporting an industry that exploits its workers. All brands should aim for a fair, living wage in a safe environment and promote training and sustainable employment.

  1. INVEST IN GOOD QUALITY BASICS

A de-toxed wardrobe is based on good basics. Researchers have found that we are motivated by novelty as it stimulates reward centres in the brain. We have evolved to look for and attend to new, unrecognised stimuli in order to survive. Choosing a great fitting pair of jeans that you know will last you for years will make you feel great inside and out.

  1. MULTI-TASKING MUST HAVES

Pieces that can be worn in a number of different ways save on wardrobe space and are economically friendly based on cost per wear. 

  1. ABOVE ALL…EMBRACE YOUR INDIVIDUAL STYLE

Use fashion to express yourself – it should be an outside expression of your inner being. Recently, researchers coined the term ‘enclothed cognition’ to describe the influence of clothes on a wearer’s psychological processes. In short, we’re affected by the physical experience of wearing clothes and the symbolic meaning of them. That is why you should never feel compelled to keep up with a trend that doesn’t fit your style. Instead, explore what your own sense of fashion is and most of all, enjoy it. 

Alicia Taylor is the co-founder of GATHER&SEE, an online store offering carefully curated collections from the best in sustainable fashion. 

 

 

 

 

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