Circular economy - and The Fashion a must read
With increasing environmental awareness, the economic imperative to "Spend now, think later" is getting increasingly scrutinized. Today's consumer tends to be more mindful about consumption, looking for just enough and better, more durable options.
People have also become more conscious of the impact their everyday consumption has on the environment and society, and these initiatives are often described as a move towards sustainable fashion, yet critics argue a circular economy based on growth is an oxymoron, or an increasing spiral of consumption, rather than a utopian cradle-to-cradle circular solution.
In today's linear economical system, manufacturers extract resources from the earth to make products that will soon be discarded in landfills, on the other hand, under the circular model, the production of goods operates like systems in nature, where the waste and demise of a substance becomes the food and source of growth for something new.
Companies such as MUD Jeans, which is based in the Netherlands employ a leasing scheme for jeans. This Dutch company "represents a new consuming philosophy that is about using instead of owning," according to MUD's website.
The concept also protects the company from volatile cotton prices. Consumers pay €7.50 a month for a pair of jeans; after a year, they can return the jeans to Mud, trade them for a new pair and start another year-long lease, or keep them.
MUD is responsible for any repairs during the lease period. Another ethical fashion company, Patagonia set up the first multi-seller branded store on eBay to facilitate secondhand sales; consumers who take the Common Threads pledge can sell in this store and have their gear listed on Patagonia.com's "Used Gear" section.
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