Sustainability and Personal Style

As I stand opposite my wardrobe deciding what to wear, I suddenly thought – I really can’t remember the last time I bought an item of clothing.

Sustainability is such a hot topic at the moment, with many of us watching Stacey Dooley’s eye-opening documentary Fashion’s Dirty Secrets. I used to be so influenced by bloggers/instagrammers and those around me to keep refilling my wardrobe, to the point where I would open the doors and an avalanche of jumpers and jeans would threaten to smother me.

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My shopping stopped immediately when I lost my job due to anxiety last year. I simply had no money to spend on clothing. I had nowhere to go to wear the clothes I did own.

I have since began working again, less hours and less pay. I have to be frugal to live. And I suddenly thought back to my previous wage, where did my money go?! How did I possibly end the month struggling when I earned so much more than I do these days? I looked back at my accounts.

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Asos. Topshop. Boohoo. H&M. You name it, I bought it.

But why? I have so many beautiful clothes, so many items I adore – and I had filled my wardrobe so much I could barely see what I owned. It occurred to me how incredibly Unsustainable I had been previously.

I seem to be thanking my anxiety for a lot of things these days, and it occurred to me that this change had to happen and what a great change it was. I barely buy any clothing now, and if I had in the past year, it was a considered purchase of necessity, not a fleeting desire.

I prefer my style now, I re-wear my favourite outfits day after day. I look forward to occasions where I can wear my favourite dress that I have worn for previous occasions. Being unable to shop actually made me find more of my personal style. I was working with what I already own and I feel more ‘me’ than ever before.

I am not encouraging anyone to not shop, but don’t shop on impulse and because you see others around you wearing a certain item. I started shopping in charity shops more when I did need an item of clothing, and found myself gravitating more towards the mens section. I found my love for a more androgynous style when I am not living in yoga pants. I found I suited browns and neutrals. The more I was finding myself again, I found my personal style grow alongside me.

I adore clothes, I adore fashion and styling. It doesn’t mean we have to be throwaway and unsustainable to find this though. I found my style when I literally could not buy a thing, and its made me have more fun with the clothes I already own.

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