You love your clothes and have had great times with them but let’s face it, like most relationships sometimes they have to be renewed. When you’ve reached this point with your beloved garments you don’t need to be nasty with them and the environment.

The approximate global textile waste in 2019 was about 13 million tones of which 95% could be recused or recycled.

Our creative team looked for fabrics and materials discarded as litter in East London for a recycle project

Textile waste is not being repurposed appropriately causing significant environmental damage and this is one of the reasons why fashion is known to be one of the most pollutant industries in the wold, some studies place it on second after the oil industries. Off course this waste is not the sum of only our unwanted clothes or textile items, there is also a significant number of discarded textiles occurring at production level.

Discarded fabrics and trimmings recovered and repurposed to make a new dress

There are numerous reports, studies, films and stories about this and we are building a library of links to share with you if you’d like to know more about it. But we’d like to encourage you to do your bit and contribute to change this fact. Here are 5 tips that can inspire you to extend the life of the materials in your clothes, after you’re done with them:

GET TO KNOW IT

Care labels can be confusing and sometimes quite itchy but knowing a bit about its materials can help you extend the life of your clothes significantly. If you can’t find information on your clothes, look for assistance from the brand, most brands have easy access to materials information. Alternatively just browse the web and you’ll be shock of how much information is there!

THINK OF ITS REAL VALUE

What you’ve paid for it might not represent its real value. Think of where the materials come from, imagine the people who made it and their community.  Have you created any valued connection or memory with your garment? Did it belong to someone important to you? Think or ask if it can be fix or re-styled?

SHARING IS CARING

If you really are done with it, see if anyone you know wants it, if not, why don’t you sell it or take it to your local second hand or charity shop.

LOOP IT BACK

Most councils or boroughs will have textile collection facilities. You can check online where to drop them, you can look here for locations in England. Some brands have recycling drop off points, textile banks or look for recycling programs online.

GROW YOUR GARDEN

If you have some material knowledge, why don’t you experiment and try to composted garments that are made from natural materials such as cotton, hemp, flax, silk, wool, cashmere, linen, mohair, alpaca and jute. Some reconstituted fabrics like viscose and bamboo can also be composted but you need to know how.

This blog’s featured picture showcases the final piece from the Recycling-From-Waste project run in east London, which promoted awareness about a more sustainable disposal of textiles in urban areas.