Fashion Revolution Week is nearly here! During the week of April 22 - 29, individuals from around the world come together to raise awareness, demand transparency, and push for change in the fashion industry.
How Fashion Revolution Week Started
Fashion Revolution Week is an annual event that aims to raise awareness of the environmental and social impact of the fashion industry. This event was first launched in 2014, after the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh, which killed 1,138 people and injured many others on April 24, 2013.
Despite visible cracks in the building's structure, and concerns from factory workers, factory owners had forced their workers to continue working. This tragic event was a wake-up call that no one should die for the sake of fashion.
Fashion Revolution Week encourages us to ask questions about the clothes we wear, including who made them, where they were made, and under what conditions. The overall goal with this movement is that there will be greater transparency and sustainability from fashion brands, and to encourage consumers to make more ethical and sustainable fashion choices.
With this year being the 10th anniversary of the Rana Plaza collapse, Fashion Revolution Week 2023 is expected to be an especially impactful event, promoting change towards a more sustainable and responsible fashion industry.
Why We Need a Fashion Revolution
The fashion industry is in dire need of a revolution because of the numerous negative impacts it has on society and the environment. We desperately need a change in how our clothing is made.
Garment workers around the world still face severe mistreatment in their workplace. They are subjected to exploitative working conditions, including low wages, long working hours, and unsafe working conditions.
Garment workers in Bangladesh work an average of 62 hours per week. They are paid far less than a liveable wage, while fast fashion CEOs are making millions.
Lack of Transparency
“Transparency” in the fashion industry refers to the public disclosing of information about a brand’s supply chain, their business practices, and their impact on workers, communities, and the environment.
The fashion industry is notoriously lacking transparency about where and how garments are made. Most fast fashion brands do not disclose enough information about their supply chain for consumers to make informed choices about the clothes they buy and wear.
Overproduction & Overconsumption
The fashion industry encourages overconsumption, with the constant introduction of new trends and styles, leading to a culture of excessive consumerism. This is what causes us to look at a closet full of clothes and still feel like we have nothing to wear.
“Fast fashion” means that clothing is produced cheaply at a rapid pace, creating a constant turnover of new styles and designs to keep customers coming back for more. Fast fashion giant, Shein, produces up to a staggering 10,000 new products a day.
Fast fashion has a devastating impact on the environment, including water pollution, greenhouse gas emissions, waste, chemical use, and resource depletion. We desperately need clothing to be made in a more environmentally conscious way.
How to Get Involved in Fashion Revolution Week
Fashion Revolution Week is an excellent opportunity for everyone to get involved and make a positive impact on the fashion industry. We encourage you to use this week to educate yourself about the fashion industry, and use your voice to support the Fashion Revolution movement.
Here are a few ways that you can get involved in Fashion Revolution Week.
1. Educate Yourself
The best thing you can do this Fashion Revolution Week is to educate yourself about the fashion industry, and its negative social and environmental impacts.
A few good places to start:
Visit the fashion revolution website
Watch The True Cost documentary
Attend virtual events happening throughout the week
Follow accounts on instagram such as @fash_rev, @remakeourworld, @goodclothesfairpay, and @cleanclothescampaign.
2. Use Social Media
Post a photo on Instagram, tagging a fashion brand and use the hashtags #WhoMadeMyClothes and #WhatsInMyClothes.
3. Use Your Voice
Write an email to your favourite brand asking them about their ethical practices. Ask them about their factories and whether they have any sustainability initiatives. Fashion Revolution has a great template that you can use.
4. Download the Good on You App
Good on You is a free app that will help you determine whether or not your favourite brands have ethical and sustainable practices. They give the brand a rating based on 3 factors: labour, environment, and animals.
This Fashion Revolution Week, we need to be holding brands accountable so that we as consumers can make more informed decisions when buying clothing.
It's important to remember that the fashion industry is complex, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution to its problems. However, by educating ourselves and taking small steps towards more sustainable and ethical fashion choices, we can contribute to a larger movement for positive change.
Ultimately, Fashion Revolution Week serves as a reminder that we all have a responsibility to make conscious choices about the clothes we wear and to demand a more sustainable and ethical fashion industry. Together, we have the power to strive towards a future where fashion embodies not only aesthetic beauty and trends but also accountability and fairness.
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