Can Fashion Ever Really Be Sustainable?

A recent piece from i-D wonders if fashion and sustainability are – by design – destined to always be mutually exclusive concepts.

Inspired by a tweet from well-known blogger, Bryanboy — which calmly reads: “I’m gonna jump off a bridge head first if I hear about yet another ‘sustainable’ clothing line. There’s nothing sustainable about creating something new en masse. Just stop. Please. You wanna know what’s sustainable? Wearing your old damn clothes, that’s what. Bye.” — the story concedes that “the fashion industry relies on profit, and plenty of companies are willing to bypass human rights and fuck up the environment to secure it.”

That doesn’t mean every brand is an Enemy of the Future, however. As the story notes, there are “the designers making small collections using ethically-made fabrics” and “ones reusing and recycling old textiles to realize their vision,” like Bode and Atelier & Repairs. That said, it can still be hard to extricate the good from the bad when nearly every brand is basically trying to sell as much clothing as possible.

But while Bryanboy’s “words are aimed squarely at brands co-opting activism to sell products and worsening the ultimate problem of over-consumption,” (a concept known as Greenwashing), i-D posits that his take is “ultimately unhelpful.” As they see it,” powerful bloggers like Bryanboy [can] shift the industry paradigm and move the discussion into more useful territory.”

“The world is burning, but by making small changes and spotlighting genuinely sustainable designers we can at least help to douse the flames.”

You can read more about it at i-D.

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  • S.O. Crane

    i-D is right. As much as I dig Bryanboy, he is basically is a high fashion billboard pushing people to buy new clothes. His friend, Susie Bubble, had it right on her insta. They have some responsibility as “influencers” and should try to be a part of the solution.