The House of Lords has appealed to shoppers to abandon the feeding frenzy on cheap throw-away clothing. It is instead promoting a return to post war values and with them a move toward buying quality clothing to keep and repair.
The problem is that the cost of repairing clothes bought from any of the cheap end multiples is more than the cost of replacing them and even shoes are heading that way too. But the waste is costing the earth and both shoppers and retailers need to wise up to this fact.
Brighton retailer and designer Gresham Blake is one step ahead of the politicians in this respect and has already developed a range of menswear, Glorious British, that is designed to last and be repaired. The materials are produced and the garments made and hand finished in England. Gresham suggests to customers that they take their clothes back for an MOT every year or so.
People are beginning to develop a social conscience and are making changes to the way they live but too many are just paying lip service and refuse to resist the great bargains that are being offered by the cheep and cheerful chain stores that are offering clothes at ludicrously low prices – as little as 50p for a T-shirt.
A good example of this hypocrisy is shown in the survey conducted by Drapers following the news that Primark was using factories that engaged in unethical practices. Some 42% of people said they would stop shopping at Primark as a result of this revelation. The very next month Primark announced a growth in sales of 20% (see previous articles in Knowledge base).
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