I’ve wanted to challenge myself for quite some time with being more and more sustainable, think as much as I can about my choices. I’ve done a lot of changes in my life towards simpler and more minimalist life the past years, and now that I have my own home again, I can be the only one doing the choices that I feel to be right for me and with that to the environment and the people who produce what I buy.
During the past summer I started reading a lot more and with great books comes great knowledge and you start questioning your choices, which I think is necessary if we want to grow. What I noticed in many of those books or articles was that they brought up this question in me that what is the most important thing for me, my possessions or experiences. Because what I’ve noticed these past few years is that the less I have the happier I am, and now that I have my own space “to fill”, it would be really easy to just do that. But that’s the last thing I want to do. I feel uncomfortable as soon as I have more, and just want to get either rid of them or find them a new home, and the thing is that I don’t own that much, very little actually. But still, I don’t want to fill my home or my head with stuff that is not necessary if I don’t have to.
I understand that we live in a world where spending money and consumerism is the thing, to show with your new hype things that you are something. It’s almost better and new and faster and this and that, that’s how I feel. A lot of the time we forget what we have, because we have so much. If you don’t even remember what you own, how necessary those things are for your wellbeing?
This challenge is not only making my closets cleaner, what they already are, but to make me feel more conscious about my choices when I do buy something, in this case clothes. I do challenge myself in this same way in everything in my life, from food to home products to how I go from one place to another.
What I want to do is to only have the clothes and shoes I actually wear in my closet, not the inbetweens or maybe when I’m skinnier or what ever it is you save something for. And when I do buy something new, I want to think and do some research about where it comes from, does the brand care about the fabric and how it’s made and about the people who make it, is it made sustainable/ ecological/ ethical and still be something I want to wear without me having to change my style. So I’m banning all fast fashion brands and stores from myself, yes it might mean that I need to wear the same clothes I have now for longer and have less variety, but I rather save my money to buy something that is well made, possibly close to me and that I can use my money with clear conscience. And I also want to take this one in, one out habit in my life, so if I find something that can replace what I have and what is better, I might buy that and put the old one away. But only if there’s really a reason for it, not just for the want aspect of buying.
I did some digging today in my closets and went through all I have. I put all that didn’t fit me now and that I had saved for that “later” day, in a pile to go through and see where they could go, if I could sell some and the rest give to charity. I only saved what I actually wear, or have worn in the last 6 months. That’s also something I’ve done for a long time now, if I haven’t used or worn something in the past 6 months, then I put it forward because I doubt that I’ll wear it later either.
I counted the clothes I wear now, and I had less than 20 items, that includes pants, tops, dresses and skirts. All in all it looks that I have around 50 items of clothes. And that’s max. I also have 5 pairs of sneakers, 1 pair of “work” boots and a pair of “fancier” low leather shoes. And that feels more than enough, the only things that I’ve wanted to buy for some time and feel that I need are a pair of good jeans because I don’t have any at the moment, but I know which ones I would get when I can, so no problem there. Kings of Indigo, I’m lusting after you! 🙂 And couple button up shirts, other than those, I feel that I have all that I need. Of course if there would all of sudden be a party that I would need to really dress up I would need to get something, but as I don’t have those in my life all the time and often, I think I’m okay.
So basically the challenge is very simple, whatever I buy from now on, will have to be sustainable/ ethical and ecologically made. That’s it.
I’ve found some amazing brands already that would fill the void for my love of the style that I could easily find from And Other Stories or COS, but I’m on the hunt for more similar ones as my style is very easy, classic and minimalist.
Brands that I love now are Kings of Indigo, I could pretty much buy anything from them. Patagonia, always as they really work hard to make that difference in how to produce clothes and equipment. Bysigne from Denmark has some really nice pieces, Armed Angels from Germany does really nice stuff too, Klättermusen from Sweden, Halla x Halla from Finland, Studio August from Estonia has the most amazing and beautiful pieces, again a brand that I could pretty much buy everything from, Mori Collective from Finland has great pieces too. And I have to say that I like what adidas is doing research wise and to try to make a difference as a massive company. So there are few that I’ve found already but of course I’m on the hunt all the time now.
I’m feeling really optimistic about this personal challenge, as it’s like a continuity to what I’ve been doing for some time now. Less stuff means clearer head to me and for me the idea of being a minimalist or how ever you want to call this, mixed with being concerned about the worlds future, is more about the journey to knowing who you are, not so much about frantically putting stuff away. If something gives serious substance to your life, then collect it, like for me books give me life so I tend to buy them, but I’ve also started to give them forward too, as we rarely read them more than once.
From now on, I will do little posts about the clothes I have bought and tell you why I chose that one. And if you have any great tips for me on what brands I should check out, please leave a comment and I’ll check them out! 🙂
Here’s couple sites that might be interesting if this is something you feel that you would want to do to, and a great podcast about what minimalism really is about.
Also, I highly recommend that everyone watches Before the Flood documentary!