Over the past few months, I've been on a journey that has, frankly, been empowering yet overwhelming. It's been a journey comprised of learning to shop ethically and sustainably. In the past, it never occurred to me to consider where our clothing is made, how our clothing is made, with what our clothing is made and by whom our clothing is made. Like so many others, I've always shopped at chain stores never thinking about how the products got there or where my money was actually going. Talk about checking my brain at the door! When I first heard the phrase "avoiding fast fashion" I admit that I thought it was just a new trend and seemed like too much work to make a difference. I'm so thankful God placed a nudge inside my heart to become interested in learning more about avoiding fast fashion and being intentional and wise with my purchases. I've learned that not only was I an obnoxious spender and how little thought I put into my purchases but that all of my shopping was based on impulse and trends. None of the clothing I shopped for was good quality and would look worn and nasty after 1-2 washes. I've also realized that here in the USA, we have this desire to own everything as if so much joy and success comes from acquiring it all. Rethinking my shopping habits revealed to me what a slave I am to material items and how I don't even appreciate what I have. And here's the thing... life's a journey. It's taken me a while to barely scratch the surface of the ethical and sustainable world. There will always be information to learn and old habits to correct. Don't panic and think you have to totally shift your way of shopping overnight. If you can - that's great! But for most of us, it's a learning process and takes times.
Like my friend Olivia of Simply Liv and Co. says,"Our small choices matter and over time, those choices add up to really important choices. I've gone from overwhelmed consumer to passionate advocate to frustrated influencer to "veteran" participant. I began my journey understanding almost nothing about ethical fashion, only that I hoped it was "real" and that it could make a true difference in my life and the lives of the people making my clothes."
To me, Olivia sums it up perfectly. I couldn't agree more. Remember, we may be one individual, but change is made my individuals doing their part and coming together to make a difference.