Now is the time for planning and thinking about what’s important for 2020 and the years to come. Overwhelmingly, it’s about sustainability and looking after what we have. So, what can we do to make a difference? Have you heard about ‘Earthshot’, an initiative pioneered by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge? I think the word ‘pioneering’ is the right way to describe what’s required of us all at this critical moment in the Earth’s history.
I started Roundabout five years ago because I wanted to run my own business doing something I enjoyed. I make sustainable handmade children’s clothes and I love what I do. But is it enough? Now, I’m questioning whether I want to be part of the fashion industry, and I worry about the environmental impact my clothes are having. So, here’s my pledge for 2020 and beyond.
All of my fabric is used, and nothing is thrown away. After cutting, the larger pieces make bunting, and the smaller pieces are sold to customers for their patchwork and craft projects. All monies are donated to The Treloar School and College in Alton in Hampshire which is a fantastic school for children with severe disabilities. The rest goes to the Southampton Scrapstore, a charity that offers a valuable resource to schools, youth clubs and many other groups and individuals for their art and crafting projects. I’m very proud that my business producing high quality children’s clothes in the UK has zero waste.
Reversible Children’s Clothes
It’s essential that clothes don’t end up in landfill, so we need to buy fewer, better quality clothes, take good care of them and make sure they’re handed on. I’ve worked extremely hard to produce a range of children’s clothes that are timeless, that can be passed on, that can be loved again and again. So, families buying the pieces are buying products that will last, that will span generations, and be enjoyed in many lifetimes of use. The children’s clothes are reversible too so getting two looks for the price of one is obviously a bonus for all! I also offer Roundabout Again which gives you the chance to return your as-good-as-new Roundabout clothes to my stand at any show and receive a £5 discount to spend on the day on your next purchase. I then re-sell the clothes as pre-loved. I started this last year and it does work.
So, the next time you shop for children’s clothes, whether it be for dresses, trousers, knitwear, shorts or t-shirts, think about its lifespan, and where it could be in five, 10 or 15 years’ time. Who can you hand them onto? Who will love them just as much?
Fashion Revolution is a movement that aims to “radically change the way clothes are sourced, produced and consumed so that our clothing is made in a safe, clean and fair way”. This year, I’ll be looking at where the cotton I use comes from to ensure it’s sourced through companies who care about their employees and about the environment. I’m busy looking for suppliers who are part of the Better Cotton Initiative.
I’ll keep you updated about my endeavours and would love to hear about yours for 2020 and beyond!