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The changing fashion industry landscape, slow(er) fashion, how & why before you buy

The hot topic of sustainable, conscious, eco, ethical fashion. Making better choices and asking yourself do I REALLY need it? Is it solving a problem or am I contributing to it?

illustrated fashion ladies
Illustrated fashionistas

Handmade, well-made, UK designed, Made in England, local employer, slow fashion, small batch production, collaborations with artists, though altogether not using the sustainable label for the Hanova Studio brand yet. Why?

Is it justified when it is essential to ask how something can be sustainable if it takes new resources to be produced when there is already a heap of adequately re-usable existing items at our disposal? Perhaps a better way to describe the sustainable style is 'conscious consumerism. You are still buying/going to buy new but you are doing it better, needs over wants. Read more about this article via @huckmagazine and @kat_george.

My brand Hanova Studio will attempt to make some better choices; having all the production made really local to where I live in my home town of Brighton by an incredibly talented seamstress. The pieces I will offer will be timeless, classic styles created to last using (where possible) organic fabrics or natural fibres and trimmings. However, as the fashion industry heads towards a future where textile resources are becoming scarce and the production of these fibres continues to cause irreversible damage to our environment, more and more companies are seeking out alternative fibres - but even these cannot hold the green-washing credentials they allude to - just sayin'!

In the 90's it was all about the 'must-have' item fuelling the desire and obsession at any cost to have that piece. But around the developed world, consumers seem to be losing their appetite for more. Even goods for which there once seemed insatiable demand seem to be losing their lustre. Demand is saturated for stuff. We have reached peak stuff. Call it suffocation!

Now, the question is Aristotelian: how to live a happy life – or “humanomics”. Aristotle was clear: happiness results from deploying our human intelligence to act creatively on nature. To inquire and the quest for understanding is the root of happiness.

Yet most people today work in jobs they do not much like, buy goods they do not much value. What we want is the purpose and a sense of bettering ourselves, which is not served by buying another smartphone, wardrobe or kitchen. This endeavour works more successfully as a shared social movement with others with the same common cause.

As this common cause gathers pace and momentum for a greater purpose and bettering ourselves with our choices of consumerism; be it fashion, travel etc. There is a concern though that the movement is also attempting to shame consumers and this could represent a very real social threat.

With all this in mind, I am being realistic; for a new business start-up I cannot go the full organic route as it is expensive so I am picking my way through the middle ground and where I cannot find the ideal organic cotton print fabric, I'll be making sure all my packaging is either bio poly and/or paper as an offset. I'll ask to raid fabric warehouses for those stacked up bolts and rolls of deadstock that have been laying around hidden just waiting to be found. I work from home from the kitchen table at Hanova-Quarters and I intend to peddle around on my bike dispatching and delivering where I can.

We will all still need to consume, we can't just stop doing things, just make way better choices about 'the doing'. As Vivienne Westwood said: Buy less, Choose Well and Make it Last #lovedclotheslast

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