Liverpool brands are bucking the fast fashion trend to produce sustainable and environmentally friendly clothes.
Fast fashion has been crticised for creating an unsustainable model, often using inexpensive and low-quality designs sampled from the catwalk and celebrity trends that reach the shops at a rapid rate of production. This can lead to the quality of a product degrading after a few wears and people feeling as if their clothes are “out of trend”.
According to research conducted by Censuswide for Barnardo’s last year Brits were expected to spend £2.7 billion on fashion that will only be worn once. In addition WRAP UK, a charity fighting for sustainability, estimates that 350,000 tonnes of clothing ends with a value of £140million ends up in landfill in Britain each year.
Nature Climate Change claim textile production is one of the most polluting industries, producing 1.2 billion tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually which is more than international flights and maritime shipping produce combined.
Sustainable fashion production in Merseyside is still in its early days with a small number of brands committed to reducing the environmental damage that fast fashion is having on the planet.
Rhi Jones, the founder of Reins clothing, a sustainable children’s clothing brand in Liverpool, said: “We only use sustainable fabrics, mostly recycled plastic waste but also organic and recycled cotton too.
“We only use sustainable and environmentally friendly practices such as digital and water-based prints. Although it may be to our detriment, we have decided on a slow fashion approach over a seasonal basis meaning we work on a collection to its completion.
“We’ll make to order in the future to reduce waste. We avoid sales and selling off of stock as we believe this devalues and perpetuates the throwaway mentality of the market.”
According to Wrap UK, extending the lifespan of a garment by nine extra months of active use would reduce carbon, water and waste footprints by around 20-30% each.
The current model that fast fashion brands are following is said to be unsustainable and celebrity endorsements of fast fashion brands are spreading the wrong message.
Make Thread is a sustainable fashion brand based in Liverpool that produces designs only on demand and operates on a zero-waste production line.
Co-founder Katie Roche said: “We have always admired the likes of Stella McCartney and Vivienne Westwood, and newer brands like Ganni, who were implementing more of a sustainable approach, although, they aren’t fully sustainable.
“We looked at Copenhagen Fashion Week for inspiration which celebrates and drives sustainable brands.”