Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Of Sailors & Lions & Sustainbility

Grey, grey, grey.

It's been a bit of a long day. I had to run about the city in the rain-not fun when it's for work. So, upon getting home I slipped into some cozy clothes and sipped some Genmai tea.

I've been reading quite a lot about sustainability and fashion - or, rather sustainability and the production of textiles and the construction of product. When I'm not so tired and crabby (thanks to chilly grey weather), I'll share some of my ideas about what I've learned.

I'm interested in knowing if you have any knowledge on that topic (sustainability/eco-fashion). Is it something that you research or something that you look for when you shop?

From my closet:

Striped Sailor Sweater- Vintage
Wide Leg Jeans- See By Chloe
Belt- Vintage from Pretty Penny- right here in Oakland.
Shoes - shh! They're hiding.


  1. Genmai is my favorite green tea. I need to find it loose somewhere (my coop only sells it bagged).

    Anyway. I think there are just so many variables with clothing - from the manufacturing of the textiles to the shipping to the actual construction. Those are the things I originally started thinking about in terms of buying new clothing. Buuut then there are also all the catch-22's about organic cotton being worse for the laborers, certain bamboo not being sustainable, synthetics off-gassing, etc. And thennnn there is the excellent points made by Franca/Oranges and Apples with regards to materials matching the purpose of the garment.

    The hardest thing is that nothing really comes with a label as far as how detrimental the textile handling was (raw material production and collection, dying, processing, shipping - how far and which method) so I feel like it's a stab in the dark. Especially since we're essentially trusting the retailers to tell us, honestly, what the benefit is. I don't believe they even know.

    I linked this article a little while back (2/11): http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/2b27447e-11e4-11df-b6e3-00144feab49a.html

    I feel like the best I've been able to come up with is looking for certain pieces to be organic (Levis Capital Es) or handmade?

    Good question! Would love to hear your thoughts on it!

  2. I hate having to do anything in the rain- I wish I could just hibernate until the sun comes out again.

    I've read a little about sustainability, and certianly try not to waste, opting to repaire or alter something rather than throwing it away and buying new, but it is not my lifestyle. I still buy things made from inorganic materials and don't have a 100% thrifted wardrobe.
    The ideas are there, but I don't know how to comit.

  3. This topic has been popping up a lot lately, but I can't say that when I go shopping that sustainability has been at the forefront of my mind. I don't buy fur and thats as far as I've taken it, but as I read more I feel I will soon be making more responsible decisions.

  4. That is such a great sweater!

    And this is something I think about too. I mean, honestly, the most environmentally sound manufacturing is no manufacturing. I used to think that organic cotton and bamboo textiles solved everything (to be fair, conventional cotton does take a lot of water and pesticides), but an organic garment isn't necessarily fairly traded, and the factory that produced it wasn't necessarily environmentally sound.

    I'm a bit suspicious of organics at places like Target and H&M, but there are a lot of smaller lines (Delforte demin, Linda Loudermilk) wherein every phase of production is monitored by someone who cares about environmental impact. Those, I'm happy to support, because if there's going to be any new production of clothes (and it's safe to say there always will be), it might as well be as environmentally sound as possible.

    Also, I think it'll be a bit like organic food--eventually, as people start to separate truly mindful manufacturing and greenwashing, there will be clearer regulations for garments marked 'green' or 'eco' or whatever.

  5. I don't know if you saw, but I did a few posts on sustainability and clothes over on my blog. Here's part three (it links to parts one and two):

    It's a fascinating and difficult topic!