When it comes to textile waste, well, we aren't great at it. In the UK alone we threw 300,000 tonnes of textiles into landfill in just one year, that's around £140million of super cute clothing just sitting in a pile with last weeks take-out cartons.
As you know we're pretty big on the whole recycling thing. Good news, Vintage is basically super chic recycling. We recently made all our packaging recyclable too - Good Bye plastic!
To make a huge impact, we need the government to take this issue seriously and supple the UK with better textile recycling facilities. Really cool things can happen to your clothes when they're recycled. They can become new clothes, insulate houses or even become car seats...but none of this can happen if they're just sitting in Landfill. Every little helps, so here's our guide to recycling your old clothes without too much effort.
It's an obvious one but using platforms like eBay, Depop or even Instagram is a great start to recycling your old clothes. You can make a little money and save the Earth at the same time. (Win- win!) For premium items try some of the more fancy sites such as Vestiaire or The RealReal.
This one isn't for wall flowers but if you're up for a party, a clothes swap is a great way to get some freebies. Try searching Facebook for swaps in your area or you could go all out and host your own.
Sharing is caring and your friend has been eying up that faux fur coat for years, be a babe and give her the coat. If your friends don't love your style, there's a cute stranger out there that will. Charities are always looking for donations, so you’re not only saving your items from landfill but you can also choose a cause that you care about. If you’re pushed for time or you have too many items to take yourself there are plenty of charities such as Barnardo's, Sense and Salvation Army that will collect them from you free of charge. Items that can’t be used to sell in their stores are sold onto the rag trade and made into shoddy for insulation and stuffing mattresses.
This is our preferred method. We donate all of the clothes that we don't think are good enough to sell. Just make sure they're clean first.
Many local companies will now buy textiles by the kilo, you’re not going to make your next million but the fabrics will be recycled.
Some of the things we've learnt...
There are plenty of big high street stores that have now started offering recycling at their stores for discounts and vouchers. It sounds great and they have made bold claims about their recycling efforts but many of these companies have been found to send the items on to make profit.
Some of the items have been sent to East African Countries where they sold on as second hand clothing but the low quality are now being destroyed in fires as they’re unwearable.