10 Commandments of Sustainable Fashion

by Megan Andresen about a year ago in tips

Thou shall not live unconsciously.

10 Commandments of Sustainable Fashion
Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash

We all know or have heard of the 10 Commandments.

However, did you know we can easily create the 10 Commandments of anything, if we really think about it? It is an easy way to create a meaningful list, one not too short and one not too long, that can evoke questioning and guidance into the topic at hand.

Let's first take a look at the 10 Commandments as some of us know it:

  1. You shall have no other Gods but me.
  2. You shall not make for yourself any idol, nor bow down to it or worship it.
  3. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.
  4. You shall remember and keep the Sabbath day holy.
  5. Respect your father and your mother, so that you many live a long time in the land that I am giving you.
  6. Do not commit murder.
  7. Do not commit adultery.
  8. Do not steal.
  9. Do not accuse anyone falsely.
  10. Do not desire another man's house; do not desire his wife, his slaves, his cattle, his donkeys, or anything else that he owns.

10 Commandments of Sustainable Fashion

With the original commandments in mind, in order to truly get to the bottom of how the fashion industry is unsustainable, we need to take a magnifying glass to every sector possible. This boils down to way more than 10 bullet points in a list, but 10 is a good place to start. It starts from the very beginning of the product life cycle. The brains of the designers. If I could choose 10 Commandments to start, this is where I would suggest we begin.

  1. You shall design from a circular fashion standpoint; design out waste by designing smart, manufacture ethically, and recycle your items back into your lifecycle. The 'take, make, dispose' model can no longer be standard.
  2. Do not purchase fast fashion items for any reason; do not buy something you do not need because it is cheap.
  3. Do not use plastic or cotton shopping bags; use only reusable recycled plastic, nylon, or woven polypropylene bags.
  4. You shall remember to thrift, buy secondhand, or buy vintage when possible; slow fashion is the name of the game, so get started.
  5. You shall not throw away clothing for any reason; reduce, reuse, or recycle your unwanted pieces. Look to charities that could benefit from your donation, as there are so many locations that could use your donations!
  6. You shall limit the amount of waste created in fashion by producing lines that utilize all components of the fabric and materials; design with a passion for sustainability.
  7. Do not create or buy single-use plastic products that will not be able to be repurposed into new items or fabrics; there are fashion companies that are being sustainable in every aspect, so look to their ways first.
  8. You shall buy consciously in all aspects of your daily life; just as you should think before you speak, think before you buy. Lead by example and live life mindfully.
  9. You shall take the time to research companies ethical standards and sustainable practices before purchasing specific items; you research before you buy a television or cell phone, so why not spend the time also researching your apparel companies?
  10. Do be creative in terms of understanding the product lifecycle; look into purchasing from companies that provide clothing drop-offs for circular economic benefits.

You do not have to follow all 10 Commandments and be perfect, but I do think it opens the eyes of those who are lost in their journey of becoming sustainable.

All you need is less. Less is more. Caring is woke. Sustainability is key.

Did you know that Americans use approximately 100 billion plastic bags a year, which results in 12 million barrels of oil through the manufacturing process. What is wrong with us? Let me tell you. We are lazy and prefer convenience. Well, guess what, it is just as convenient to bring in your reusable bag, dear. But also, it is just as convenient for fashion and retailers to provide us with the more sustainable option.

We need a mix of both, and ASAP.

Don't you agree?

Megan Andresen
Megan Andresen
Read next: The legendary Tweed fabric
Megan Andresen

I'm a lover of vintage and classic style, traveling, and sustainability.

Rooted in the Midwest, you betcha.

See all posts by Megan Andresen