It includes a fascinating account of how NAFTA made possible the international success of fast fashion. So the term “fast fashion” really refers to all of the above: fast to produce, fast to deliver, and fast to change. It forms a key part of the toxic system of overproduction and consumption that has made fashion one of the largest polluters in the world. It was around this time that sweatshops emerged, along with some familiar safety issues. Contact your local Fashion Revolution Co-ordinator to find out more about what is going on where you area and what you can do. Thomas reports that there are immigrant workers in Los Angeles today who are victims of wage theft and exploitation, not to mention the Bangladeshi, Chinese, Vietnamese and other laborers who face working conditions that are at best grim and at worst inhumane. The Guardian called it the ‘biggest climate protest ever’. So no surprises here. Even though structural issues with the building were known and many other stores closed, the garment factories on the upper floors remained open, and managers ordered employees to come to work. Further down the supply chain, there are the farmers who may work with toxic chemicals that can have devastating impacts on their physical and mental health, a plight highlighted by the documentary The True Cost. This trend also suits social media. Carry on reading to find out about these incredible campaigns and people who are taking action. We have seen some powerful strikes and protests on the streets whilst also seeing some moving and alarming documentaries which are showing just how much of a crisis we are in. I can’t get her description of a woman as “peaches-and-cream pretty” out of my head; I know exactly what she looks like. Among the book’s delights are Thomas’s sketches of her individual subjects. Funky Kalakar brings alive the stories of ancient craft in the form of contemporary designs by handcrafting them using natural materials. She makes a strong argument for the importance of science applied to (what are often seen as) the frivolities of fashion, especially if we want to move away from the unartful excesses of mass production. (Organic cotton is periodically touted as a sustainable alternative, though it currently makes up only about 0.4 percent of the cotton market, making it nearly impossible for any company to rely on now or in the near future.) The film reveals the human cost of fast fashion in which we are all complicit. That may be a question for another book; it is not the goal of “Fashionopolis” to provide all the answers. The real issue with fast fashion is the speed at which it is produced, putting a huge pressure on people and the environment. Zara stores restock twice a week. In 2015, sales of the fast fashion industry in China reached CNY 534.7 billion, up 7.4% from 2014 and with a 14.5% CAGR growth from 2010-2015. So how does this tug-of-war play out on social media? more than 500 million kilos of unwanted clothing ends up in landfill every year. Nor will the synthetic microfibers that end up in the sea, freshwater and elsewhere, including the deepest parts of the oceans and the highest glacier peaks. The Spanish label has seen its profits grow steadily , thanks largely to how quickly it moves through styles. To most readers, “fast fashion” is probably a pejorative term. For many businesses, it’s more important to keep cost low and offer new products as quickly as possible. with 300kgs of chemicals being added for every 900kg of animal hides tanned. In the last section, Thomas marvels at the ingenuity of those trying to “disrupt” fashion. And there’s a growing movement that aims to convince others not to buy from certain retailers. Find most products in XS-XL. Find most of the brand's range in US sizes 22-34. tentree is a lifestyle apparel company that plants ten trees for every item purchased! The obsession with selfies and taking the perfect photo means that social media users think more about the clothes they wear, and have a new need to change looks constantly. They were crying out for help. Check out our webinar on how to identify and analyze fashion trends with real-time social data: The top monthly insights sent straight to your inbox. Fast fashionistas don’t need a product that lasts a lifetime. It plays into the idea that outfit repeating is a fashion faux pas, and that if you want to stay relevant, you have to sport the latest looks as they happen. By limiting each garment to short runs, Whimsy + Row utilises deadstock fabric, reduces packaging waste, and takes care of precious water resources. Images via Unsplash and Fashion Revolution. In a similar vein, Patagonia has a large section of its website detailing its corporate stance and environmental footprint. • The statistics produced by Oxfam are based on lifetime emissions for new clothing bought in the UK, including sourcing raw materials, manufacturing, production, transport, washing and disposal. If you’re reading this article, you might already be aware of fast fashion’s dark side, but it’s worth exploring how the industry got to this point. But about 20 years ago, something changed. The Spanish label has seen its profits grow steadily, thanks largely to how quickly it moves through styles. This incredible campaign endeavours to form international solidarity. Danny Sriskandarajah said: “Buying second-hand clothes helps to slow the ferocious fast fashion cycle, giving garments a second lease of life. Fast-fashion brands may not design their clothing to last (and they don’t), but as artifacts of a particularly consumptive era, they might become an important part of the fossil record. Good On You publishes the world’s most comprehensive ratings of fashion brands’ impact on people, the planet and animals. Nothing, ideally, should go in the trash.” But the practical considerations — cost, efficiency, resource limitations — are often left unaddressed. Poor countries have contributed the least to the climate crisis, yet are suffering the full force of its devastating consequences: from the extreme cyclones in Mozambique and record heatwaves in India to the exacerbated drought in East Africa. The company is widely regarded as one of the most ethical clothing retailers, regularly appearing at the top of lists on the subject. In 2018 both Vogue Australia and Elle UK have dedicated entire issues of their magazines to sustainable fashion, a trend being taken up each year by more and more big names. Sounds great, right? Source: UNEP, The New York Times, The Guardian, Source: Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals, Better Cotton Initiative, UNEP. Thomas doesn’t say, but in fact it does, because it contributes to global emission of methane, a potent heat-trapping gas.