Top 6 ways to reduce your clothing waste

Do you keep reading about the impact of fast fashion and secretly feel guilty? Do you wonder what you can do to help lower your clothing waste? Here we give you the top 5 tips to reduce your personal clothing waste.

1. Shop Less

I know it’s easier said than done, but try your best. First of all, try and avoid the temptation of going shopping or browsing online. Keep yourself occupied through other medium such as reading. However if you do find yourself venturing out to the stores or online, ask yourself ‘do I really need this?’ or ‘how often will I really wear it?’, ‘is this an impulse buy’, or ‘do I TRULY love this item?’. These simple questions should help. If you do not truly love something, then it is better to save that money for something you really do like even if it is more expensive.

Also have a think about the quality of the item. Hopefully you are buying something you plan to wear on multiple occasions, but will it last that many washes? Or will it easily lose shape after a few minutes in the washing machine? If so, then it’ll soon be an item you no longer love, and so it’s best to avoid creating the waste or wasting your money.

If you are buying an outfit for a special occasion, think about whether you have anything you can re-wear, or wear in a different way to make it look like a whole new outfit. Perhaps pairing it with different shoes or accessories can make it look new.

So get creative!

2. Shop in your wardrobe

Before you even venture out shopping, have a look at your wardrobe! Is there something in there that you could wear instead? Is there something that now fits really well or is back in style? Is there a forgotten favourite that you haven’t worn in a long time?

You’ll be surprised at the hidden gems you find in the back of your wardrobe! So save yourself some time and money by just rummaging through your old items. It is also helpful to have a neat wardrobe where items are easily in display, making it simple for you to see what you have.

3. Have a clothes swap party!

It’s great when you can swap clothes with your nearest and dearest friends and families. It makes you feel as though you have a whole new wardrobe, and yet its free! This is useful for anything from special occasion items barely been worn, to every day items. Just don’t forget to bring your share of clothes to the party.

Also check within your local city. Many organisations plan these events regularly and it can be a great way for you to meet new people who you share an interest with.

4. Make some money!

Feel like making some extra cash on the side? Have a look at selling your old items in exchange for some money. Many websites such as eBay, Shpock, Facebook and others provide this. It is a great way to declutter and get to know locals in your neighbourhood who may have a similar fashion sense.

Some companies even pre-pay you for the items so be sure to have a good search.

5. Be creative

Did you recently find a whole in your jeans? Can you use those sewing skills to stitch up the hole? Or ask a local tailor or friend to help you? Do you have any funky fabrics that you can stitch over it to cover the hole? This could make it look like an entirely new pair of jeans.

Can you wear old T-shirts as nightwear? Could you use your old vests as cleaning rags? There are always ways to be creative, particularly with textiles!

6. Recycle, recycle, recycle!

Whenever you put your clothes in the local bins, they usually end up in recycling centres where they can be used for insulation or lower value applications. Be sure you check where exactly the clothing is being used, to ensure it is not going into landfill or incineration (being burnt and producing toxic chemicals). Many clothes end up in poor African countries where they also end up being burnt, so please do your research beforehand.

Of course, you can donate to us! We at Kleiderly use circular economy principles to turn your waste clothing into a new material. If you are interested in finding out more, please check out our ‘Our Work’ page for more information.

Good luck with your venture! If you ever need any advice with reducing your clothing waste, please feel free to get in touch with us. We are always happy to hear from you!

Alina Bassi