Slowly but surely the fashion industry is turning towards the question of how to become more ethical - designers, retailers, customers. Of course, ethical production can mean something different for every one of us. There is an endless amount of definitions, so whichever I cover in this blog, simply be aware that my personal view on this can differ from yours. I encourage you to leave a comment behind and let me know what your definition is, and what your view is on ethical production. Together we can ignite a conversation which will bring even more awareness to the subject!
You might think Fashiola, the fashion search engine - not really quite helpful in ethical shopping? Well, I would disagree. Our mission is finding the right kind of fashion for you: help you find what you are looking for! Whether this would be an affordable pair of sneakers or a special outfit for an occasion - we’re all about helping you out on your fashion journey.
Which is why we’re endeavouring to collaborate with a variety of ethical clothing brands and shops. One of my most important personal missions is to add as many sustainable, ethically-produced focused shops and brands to Fashiola Australia and to introduce you to awesome shops and brands that are looking to change the industry’s view on how we can produce, and shop, more ethically and sustainably!
Without further ado, here’s a short ethical fashion guide to help you understand what changes YOU can make to your shopping habits!
My Ethical Fashion Guide
First thing first - what does ethical fashion mean?
Today I’m focusing on three aspects in this ethical fashion guide:
Australian-made, apparel that is produced right here in Australia
Fair working environment, workers that have created your apparel are paid a fair wage, and have decent working conditions
Ethically produced textiles, the materials that are used in apparel are sourced from an ethical supplier (which includes a fair working environment for the workers)
Now, what does that mean for us for our day-to-day shopping?
It means checking out the brands you’re looking to buy from are acting on the three points I’ve mentioned, or at least, showing they’re thinking about them! It can be difficult for a brand or a shop to switch textile suppliers so actually making a change can take a while. But if a brand or a shop shows you they’re actively thinking and acting on this - that’s quite a step forward!
There are a couple of ethical clothing brands you might already know, shop and wear without ever knowing they’re focused on these points! A few of my personal favourites you can shop from on Fashiola, and have the special Ethical Clothing Australia (ECA) accreditation are:
Say you’ve had a look at these ethical clothing brands and they’re not exactly what you’re looking for - fair enough - another option is to purchase from other known brands. These do not necessarily meet the criteria specified above, but are either working towards or already implementing at least fair working environments and ethically produced material. They've been acknowledged by the Baptist World Aid Australia’s Ethical Fashion Report 2019:
What else can you do?
Lower your consumption - buy a single, ethically-made item instead of multiple
Recycle, update and reuse old clothing
Shop at your local, independent stores and brands
The fashion industry is changing. It’s a slow change, but it’s happening! Join the movement and be more critical of the fashion you purchase. You can use the tips shared in this ethical fashion guide, or better yet: create your own!
Share with me what YOUR ethical fashion definition is, and the way you’re acting on changing the world for the good! And if you’ve bought from one of the brands mentioned above, don’t forget to tag us on Instagram (@fashiola_) when you share it with the world!