Don’t you always feel like you need one more dress or one more jacket to finish your style? So you just keep buying and throwing away the old stuff. Deep down you know you already own so many clothes! What’s going on here? if you ever wondered if you need to learn how to stop overconsumption and get yourself a clean and unique wardrobe!
1. Have a deep look in your closet and your mind
Many people have a hard time when it comes to clearing their messy closets. Fortunately, to me it’s rather simple and easy, it’s more about mentality. To understand your desire and stop overconsumption, you should learn more about the impact of advertisers. Many advertisers convince audiences (which is us) how to ‘live a good life.’ You have been told you need this and that to look good. While those pictures on TV amaze you, you are manipulated already. By understanding how consumer capitalism applied or implied in modern advertisers, you would have more control on your own mind as well as desire.
2. Knowing your own style
Instead of feeling you never have enough pieces to wear, find your own unique style and quality clothing that you can wear throughout all seasons. A personal style is an exclusive expression of oneself. You don’t need to have tonnes of clothes to do this. You only need those pieces with good quality and design that you can wear it frequently and create as much as different combinations. Forget those fashion catwalks and never mind the endless trend. Discover what suits you best, but not another doll. It’s going to save you a lot of money!
3. Say NO to Fast Fashion
We all know how we can be convinced of shopping fast fashion clothes. However, it maybe convinces you, yet it’s harmful to the environment and those poor workers. Say no to fast fashion will help to create a cleaner and ethical wardrobe. It doesn’t matter if you still have clothes from fast fashion brands (I have too!) Once you choose to be an ethical and eco-friendly fashionista, you are helping the world already. You only need to learn how to get rid of the clothes you don’t wear anymore, rearrange the priorities of your closet, and be aware what you already have and fully utilise it. Make it as a new habit and the results will speak for themselves!
After you have the list and quantity of every item, pick 3-6 favourite pieces (depends on how many you got) of each. Look at those you didn’t pick. Ask yourself did you wear any of them in the last year. If Yes, you can keep it; if No, please take it out from your closet. By doing this you will figure out what you actually enjoy wearing mostly and your own personal style will gradually pop out. Hold the thought of ‘Oh maybe I will still wear it later…’ because you don’t and never will. So be more choosy and picky!
4. What to do with those unwanted clothes? Donate or Upcycle?
I reckon most people will choose to donate their clothes. It may save you time and energy, but did you know many unwanted clothes eventually exported to many developing countries like Kenya, Uganda or Haiti? It was a nice gesture of helping the property there. However, markets in these countries are overwhelmed by the mass influx of second-hand clothes from Europe and U.S. At the same time, the local textile industry is brutally destroyed by thrift fashion. Like the traditional ‘Kitenge’ from East Africa or Haitian karabela dress.
Before giving out any unwanted clothes, make sure your local charities are reusing and recycling for your neighbourhood and the community instead of reselling it to the developing countries and causing pollution. If you still have the concern about it, DIY is always a great idea. Nothing can beat creativity. There are loads of online tutorials demonstrating how to turn unwanted clothes into something new and useful. It can be a new dress, new handbag, wrapping clothes, or even pet pillow. Go creative! (P.S. Exchanging clothes with friends is also a great option to avoid overconsumption!)
5. What to do with those selected clothes
Now you have a clean and neat wardrobe, try to spend some time to play with those garments. Create more combinations with only 3 or 4 pieces. There’s a lot of fashion challenge like now People Tree is doing a #5lookschallenge. Learn more mix and match skills and get inspired! From now on Stop overconsumption and Take Control of Your Wardrobe!