I admit- I haven’t always been the best at being green. I have, in fact, tossed water bottles in the trash can, take too long of shower, and overuse paper towels. But now that I have kids, I must take on the responsibility of setting an example.
So in doing so, I thought it would only be appropriate to post about Earth Day, and easy way us moms can jump on the go green bandwagon. However, I’m not going to harp on recycling; instead, I’m going to explain how fashion comes to play in keeping Mother Earth happy and clean.
According to schoola.com, the fashion industry historically has had a tremendous impact on the environment, and unfortunately, it’s often negative. From the manufacturing process, transportation of goods and the disposal of used clothing, fashion leaves a big carbon footprint; 98% of the clothing purchased in the U.S. comes from abroad. This means that all those garments had to be shipped thousands of miles to American consumers. The carbon emissions from transporting products have a serious impact on the environment including air and water pollution.
While we’re encouraged to limit our overall consumption as much as we can, we still have an inevitable want and need to buy products. With growing kids and the changing seasons, we often need to purchase new clothing. One way to help minimize your impact on the environment is to consider shopping secondhand before heading to the department store. Thrift stores can offer a wide variety of shopping options at discounted prices. Many thrift stores benefit social causes so you can feel good about supporting the community and keeping clothing out of landfills. Americans send 10.5 million tons of clothing to landfills every year, and most of the clothes could have been worn again if they were donated to a thrift store.
However, styles change, and we’re often left with mounds of clothes during annual closet cleans. When the time has come to part with your clothing, you have many options. Donating is one of the solutions to reducing waste by extending the lifecycle of clothing. Schoola is an online clothing retailer that sells gently used clothing to fundraise for children’s education. When you donate clothing to Schoola, 40% of the proceeds go to schools and the Malala Fund.
And for all you crafty mamas (myself not included), when clothes aren’t in good enough condition to donate, you can always repurpose them. Pinterest is a great resource for DIY projects as well as crafty eco blogs. Marisa of New Dress a Day takes outdated vintage garments and makes them new and modern with a few sewing tricks. Gina of Gina Micheleteaches you couture tricks for the gal on a budget using thrift finds. Learn some DIY style tricks from Ashley of Make It Love It and Jeanette of Craft Whack. Teens can get in on the action with this t-shirt project from Swell Life. Or, make some eco friendly home goods with Sisters, What! The ideas are infinite, so take out the sewing kit and get inspired to celebrate Earth Day.
Nadine Bubeck is a multi-media personality, author, blogger, PR pro and blessed boy mama. The TV News anchor turned all things mama contributes to numerous publications and is often utilized on TV as a parenting expert. Her niche: everything mom, baby, toddler, child, and family. She is the author of Expecting Perfect: My Bumpy Journey to Mommyhood, and founder of All Things Mama Media, LLC, the parent company for All Things Mama TV, BoyMamas.com, and more.