Marquette sustainable fashion advocates explain how to shop ethically

Fancy Free clothing
Fancy Free clothing(Annette Giachino)
Published: Jun. 30, 2022 at 5:58 PM EDT
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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - Low clothing prices may be tempting to purchase, especially with rising inflation costs. However, there may be a reason behind the small price tag.

NMU student Molly Birch said fast fashion is a term used to describe the clothing industry model of replicating high-fashion designs.

“Because there are consumers who demand clothing at such high rates and we want it now and quickly, to be cute and fit right but we don’t want to pay a lot of money for it,” Birch said.

Because of high demand from consumers, Birch said fast fashion brands continue to produce items while underpaying workers in less-developed countries.

“In these countries where the labor laws are already pretty lax, it gives them that financial incentive to continue having lax labor laws and continue oppressing these people,” Birch said.

Birch said examples include Shein, H&M and Forever 21. Fast fashion also has negative impacts on the environment.

Boomerang Retro & Relics Owner Nick Dupras said the majority of mass-produced clothing ends up in the trash.

“The speed at which it goes through the system leads to massive landfills full of mostly polyester,” Dupras said.

In order to combat fast fashion, resale owners and consumers say people should shop second-hand.

“It’s easier and more fun than most people think. The way I do it is thrifting. I thrift almost everything that I own otherwise if I’m not thrifting I support small businesses,” Fancy Free Owner Greta Hillstrom said.

Dupras said to pick timeless, high-quality items.

“Many companies are known for their items and clothing that do last and by doing that you get good-quality clothing that will last for years,” Dupras said.

You can also shop second-hand stores online with websites like Poshmark.

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