Sustainable Fashion: Saving the Planet One Outfit at a Time

Article by Kiyomi Miura, Writer

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The phrase “sustainable fashion” dates back to the 1960s. Hippies, among others, began to emphasize the importance of natural materials, after the detrimental effects of the industrial revolution had started to become clear. Mass manufacturing was made possible at the expense of our natural resources.?

The idea of sustainable fashion was present through the 70s and 80s when “second-hand fashion” was popularized. Vintage clothing came to be appreciated, and people started to up-cycle old clothes, much like how thrift shopping is very popular to this day, especially among younger people. Thanks to the Sustainable Fashion Club here at 九色社区, our high school students have the opportunity to directly take part in eco-friendly fashion.

Founded in 2019, the Sustainable Fashion Club works to raise awareness about environmental ethics surrounding the choices that we make regarding fashion. These “fashion choices” are not limited to those who care about fashion or style. It applies to every one of us high school students, from those of us who go shopping for clothes as a hobby, to the people who don’t think much about what to wear every day.?

Although it may seem insignificant, the clothing we purchase plays a role in a much bigger picture when it comes to the environment. In order to raise more awareness regarding such issues and the possible ramifications of our actions, the Sustainable Fashion Club’s delves deeper into fast fashion and the consequences that the environment faces as a result of the fashion industry. Because of the club’s relevance to such a widely-targeted audience, it is no wonder that the club has gone from 12 to now 49 members in just two years. So what’s it like being a member?

In order to get a better glimpse inside Sustainable Fashion, I interviewed the club leaders: Miyu Peters, Jacob Gibbons, and Kanna Okamura. According to the leaders, the required commitment is relatively low, but of course, this depends on members’ own dedication to the club. Some of the activities that the club hosts are crocheting, up-cycling clothes, and beach clean-ups. Last year, the club held a thrift-store-like event at school, where people could donate and buy used clothing. This year, they hope to use the leftover clothes from the event to try and up-cycle them. Another goal they have is to collaborate with other clubs like SAFE (Students Advocating For the Environment) through the Inter-Club Climate Coalition Series.

Even if you aren’t a member, there are various ways you can promote sustainability through fashion and make choices that are more environmentally friendly. First, you can donate to the club — just message the club’s Instagram if you have any used clothing you would like to donate. Second, you can be more aware of your consumption. When you shop, think about what brands you are buying from, and find out if they are ethical companies. As it is a part of our everyday lives, and something that impacts us all, we must remember to consider fashion and clothing consumption carefully.