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For cool summer dressing- keep it natural

— by Alyson Walsh

Stay cool in silk. Photo: Claire Pepper

I hadn’t realised it’s Plastic Free July – to be honest, I am still getting my head around the unlocking of everything – but better late than never. And this issue seems more pertinent than ever with all the aprés-lockdown rubbish that’s littering the streets, parks and beaches. Single-use seems to have skyrocketed. In an Instagram post this week, Fashion Revolution sited statistics on the increased use of plastic-based materials in garment manufacturing; and it is alarming, the number of brands with a penchant for polyester. Aside from being hot, sweaty and horrible, it’s also bad news for the environment:

‘Polyester, along with nylon and acrylic are common clothing materials which are made of plastic. In 2015, 60% of the clothing produced was made from polyester, a figure which has doubled since the year 2000 (Kirchain, et al.)’

‘Producing clothing from plastic-based materials uses 342 million barrels of oil each year, according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.’

For comfort and superior wafty-ness, I much prefer looser shapes in natural fabrics such as silk, cotton and linen (though I know there are concerns around the amount of water used to produce cotton). Easy-breezy clothes that feel cool to the touch and good to wear make for chic summer dressing. Go up a size for extra Waft Factor. The silk shirt in the photo was a gift from the independent label Phoebe Grace  – you may remember it comes with matching bottoms, though I haven’t really been in the mood for pyjama-rama lately preferring to team patterned silk with plain, wide leg chinos ( these are very old MHL sample sale). My chunky rings are from the super-talented Claire Stratton and in case anyone is wondering, the tie around my neck is actually a tie belt from this Toast dress. There is a slight possibility that my style sense is still in lockdown…

 

It’s all about the contrast

 

As for not-so-fantastic plastic, I always check fabric content carefully before buying – sportswear is the only stuff I own containing polyester and though most of it is ancient, I must look into this. I’m not perfect. I do buy new clothes from time to time (usually during the sales when I can find a bargain like this superb shirt dress) but I also make the most of the clothes I already own. On That’s Not My Age I want to champion slow fashion and support small businesses as much as possible. The way to make a difference is to think about what you buy, what you wear and keep clothes for a long time. Give your money to the brands who care about people and the planet –  and give companies like Boohoo the boot.

 

Stay super natural and cool in these Plastic Free Fabrics:

 

 

 

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