PLUG IN: WARDROBE CRISIS BY CLARE PRESS
You know that feeling when you meet someone new and it's like you share the same brain... Everything they say just makes you want to respond 'yaaaaasss' (and maybe do some of these 🙌🏻) and the conversation quickly leads to 'where have you been all of my life?!'. Well for me, I got that same delicious feeling when I came across the podcast 'Wardrobe Crisis' by Clare Press.
Clare is currently the fashion-editor-at-large for Marie Claire Australia with a myriad of accomplishments as a fashion journalist. Of note, she is an advocate for slow fashion, penning the book 'Wardrobe Crisis: How We Went From Sunday Best to Fast Fashion' (need to read!) and is now creating this podcast of the same name which is filled with brilliant conversations with thought leaders and fashion innovators who are exploring the issue of sustainable fashion from many different angles.
Recently there was an episode in particular that had so many golden nuggets and 'yaaass 🙌🏻' moments for me. This being an interview with Kestrel Jenkins, who has her own podcast 'Conscious Chatter' and is a pioneer of fair trade and ethical fashion. What I really loved about this interview was the discussion about how personal style can still connect with these ideals. For so long I had kept my interest in sustainability on the back burner and held back introducing the topic to The Eve as I struggled to find the balance between my love for beautiful things yet an awareness of their cost to the environment. I felt as though somehow these two passions were in conflict but some of Kestrel's quotes in this interview so perfectly summarised my newfound ideas on the topic. Two of my favourites are below.
"I only buy things because I really, really love them and that’s one way that my consumption has shifted. And I guess you need to figure out your personal style and what it you want to say to the world and it doesn’t have to be the same thing every day. I decide to be someone different every day through what I’m wearing and I love that and I think that’s the fun of it... you just have to look at your closet and what you really need in there and how you can arrange it so it will work for you."
"I am a huge promoter of buying less and being conscious about what you’re deciding to buy and you know, having a good think about it before you actually make that purchase. But at the same time… fashion is my form of art so I love beautiful things and I need them in my life for happiness too."
Fashion and Interiors have always been my biggest passions, even from a young age I have always loved rearranging my room or putting together outfits and this was how I loved to express myself creatively. However in doing so I have grown an awareness that I am dealing with 'things' and ultimately consumption which typically works in conflict with the idea of minimising waste and the possible negative implications of manufacturing's environmental consequences.
Being more conscious and considered as a consumer is where I have found my happy medium and I loved Kestrel's acceptance that fashion is something that can still be such a key part of your daily expression whilst seeking sustainable alternatives. It is about your approach and being more considered about who and what you support through your purchase.
Kestrel also raised the topic of a stigma that I too was fearful of in exploring these issues, that people feel intimidated by their lack of awareness of sustainable fashion and fall back on this idea that it is somehow 'exclusive' or extreme.
"Because automatically it turns people off… when you say ‘I’m interested in sustainable fashion’ and sometimes nowadays people get a little bit interested because they want to know what that is, but also sometimes they’re like ‘What? What does that even mean? Why is it sustainable? And then they automatically crack that image of what that means, like a hemp sack."
At first when I had the idea to start exploring sustainability on The Eve I felt that there was this middle ground to be explored as so many people view sustainable fashion in such a way. But the thing that made me think that this topic was something that needed to be discussed was looking at how the health and wellness industry is now at a place where a balanced approach is being celebrated. Going back a little while it seemed as though you could only exist exclusively on one side of the fence, either 'clean eating/vegan/intermittent faster/paleo-dieter/(insert other health fad here)' OR a cronut/deconstructed-burger/fusion-food/super-shake loving foodie. But now we are talking about how we can have both which made me think, why can't we do this with Fashion and Interiors? To hear Clare and Kestrel talk about this topic was like I had uncovered a gem and I loved hearing them share the same point of view.
If you are interested in these topics I highly recommend that you give it a listen, as well as Clare's other episodes.