9 Mar 2010

Dame Viv Says Stop the Shop!

Vivienne Westwood, Dame of British Fashion, Queen of the Campaign and donner of other noble titles, has urged shoppers to stop buying clothes for six months.

Viv, on BBC London this morning, urged fashionistas to buy only quality pieces (i.e. Westwood!) and less often to avoid waste and to promote more sustainable shopping in light of our rapidly warming little planet. This is less about economizing and more about keeping it green.

Style Cramp is ALL for going green, we’ve been doing it for years. Charity shops might be cheap, accessible and good for a one off piece that no other high street hoarder will be wearing, but they also promote recycling and ethical clothing, not to mention the money that goes to good causes. I get a lot of joy from buying a vintage piece that has possibly a hundred stories to tell, and no Primark label to send me into guilt-induced despair (albeit short-lived). While I still worry about manufacturing practices and the conditions of the workers who made it, it’s being re-worn and I’m not facilitating a new process of industrial waste by buying from the high street. That’s not to say I don’t buy new, it would be hypocritical to say that I don’t, everyone has to, but I endeavour to avoid it where possible.

So, in support of the London Climate Change Campaign, Westwood wants to keep down the volume of British landfills. Us Brits are notorious for our waste and this includes clothes.

Draper's take on the subject was this:

“We need to keep people in jobs, not threaten employment in our sector and we must ensure the survival of our colourful and creative brands and recapture the vibrancy of our high streets.

Quite frankly, not buying clothes for six months as Westwood suggests is not going to save the planet.”

Hmm, way to ignore the bigger picture, Drapers. But though Viv is a powerful woman in fashion stakes, not even her lone voice is going to do anything to stop people spending money on what they want. But it is food for thought. Perhaps rather than not buying anything for six months (except the high end stuff of course), people should endeavour in the long run to think more about the clothing they buy. The ecological impact and the ethical concerns. Because, honestly, who can say that they could stave off shopping for a whole half a year? That’s something not even the Dame can claim.


Vanity St Cyr

Image courtesy of Photobucket


  1. The problem I find with charity shop shopping is that nothing EVER fits. I'd go green if charity shops were better for blokes!

  2. You make a good point, but if you go with an agenda, and perhaps shop for accessories over fitted stuff, you can find some quality garms!