It probably was an impleasant moment for the Bread & Butter Berlin management, when Vivienne Westwood entered the stage last week and called to stop buying anything this season. In her opinion especially the fashion industry produces much too much and the consequences of fast fashion are disastrous for the environment and people in the producing countries.
“DON’T BUY ANYTHING THIS SEASON”
If I look around, my growing circle of friends are consuming less, instead of hunting every style and trend. Not consuming earns much more reputation than another new outfit. And people, who don’t buy anything for a certain time – once a week – or even one full year long – inspire and impress with their amount of money saving with this lifestyle.
„A full year of no spending seemed the only way of resetting my relationship with money completely.“ claims Michelle McGagh (listen to her audio book here).
„Not spending any money“ means in her definition no morning takeaway coffees, no cloths, no makeup. No cinema trips, no nights in the pub, no takeaways or restaurant meals, no holidays, no gym memberships, not even something like a candy bar from the supermarket. Only the food her husband bought on a budget of $57 per week and essentials like mortgage utilities, life insurance, charity donations, broadband and mobile phone bills or basic toiletries and cleaning products were allowed.
It sounds very hard to live like that for a day or even one week – to start with cooking every meal you eat. But she saved that way AU$37,000 – and not to mention the other good aspects like less waste and having a low carbon food print.
Well, Michelle McGagh is an extreme example of the stop buying movement, but what can each and every one of us learn from it? We could try out how things change in our consumer behavior if we stop hunting every trend piece, and focus on what we already have in our closets. Most of us own more than we could wear in one season, so instead of adding more on more we could first start reducing our masses to the really essential pieces. Many of this years’ trends can be styled with already existing clothes.
THE FRENCH FIVE
I think will adjust this challenge in a way that allows me to buy 5 pieces this season, also called the “french five pieces wardrobe”. Building a capsule wardrobe out of high-quality basics and only adding some selected fashion-forward statement pieces each season is a really clever way to spend less money on fashion while owning only beloved things. And a real challenge for me!
Buy only 5 pieces per season is my beginning of consuming less, and I am looking forward what will be on my top 5 this summer or rather what old treasures out of my closet will come alive! Thank you, Vivienne Westwood.