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Rise of clothes swapping helps make a small dent in the war on fashion waste

Friday, 19th May 2017: Despite working in retail, Annelie Child decided that this year she was no longer going to buy new clothes.

Instead, she plans to only buy pre-loved or recycled wear by joining in the increasingly popular and frequent clothes-swapping events popping up around Sydney and around the country.

Her first clothing swap event was at a pub in Sydney’s inner west earlier this month with organisation The Clothing Exchange.

She was one of 30 women who brought clothes to exchange for others for a participation fee of $25. Ms Child contributed two pairs of jeans, a dress and a jacket to the pool of clothes.

In return, she found herself a polka dot skirt, a Nicola Finetti dress, a pair of shoes and a bag. Clothes left over at the end of the event — on average about 80 per cent — were given to the Red Cross.

Consumers have to slow down

Australians are one of the biggest fashion wasters in the world, throwing out up to 30 kilograms of clothing a year per person. The ease of buying cheap, easily accessible and readily available clothes often of poor quality has eco-fashionistas calling for consumers to slow down from the fast fashion lane and take it more slow.

Kirsten Fredericks has been running The Clothing Exchange in Sydney for the past nine years, although it was founded in Melbourne in 2004.

She said she “used to shop a lot” but had spent the past few years reducing her wardrobe and had only bought or swapped clothes she knew would last her six to 10 years.

Keep clothes moving

For many of the women taking part in the clothes swap, they have made a conscious decision to make that small dent in the war on fashion waste.

Ms Fredericks said many clothes-swapping stores and events would not accept clothes from cheaper clothing chains with the view that designer brands produced better quality clothes that would “last longer”.

She acknowledged that not everyone could afford to pay top dollar for designer garments and therefore saw clothes swapping as a great way to exchange an expensive outfit for another.

Source by: Internet

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