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PINK EDITION Last piece available. The Magic Is On dress - variable, upcycled and ethical.

Kind to you, kind to the planet

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Sustainable fashion: Myths and facts 01

Udržitelná móda: Mýty a fakta 01
Sustainability in fashion: More than just a trend

Sustainability in fashion is a topic that is very close to me and that I have been working on for seven years. It is an extremely complex, complex and constantly evolving topic.

My interest in sustainability developed in London. During several internships in the fashion industry, I had the opportunity to gain insight into the functioning of small and large brands. The desire for my own education and to change the system eventually led me to found ADVA. In London, as abroad, discussion of sustainable fashion was common. No one questioned the meaning of the term "sustainable fashion". On the contrary, common ways and solutions were sought, and we all believed that progress was possible only through cooperation.

After returning to the Czech Republic, however, I discovered that here we have our own perspective on sustainability in the fashion industry. For most people in the Czech Republic, and unfortunately also in our industry, the word "sustainability" has become a term without a deeper meaning. Everyone interprets the topic of sustainability differently, and its true meaning is often lost. Once sustainability is discussed, we quickly reach the point where the concept is considered unrealistic. In this way, its original meaning is completely lost and the discussion slips into a binary view of things - everything is either black or white.

Sustainable fashion is often confused with concepts such as consumerism, responsibility or transparency. Although these topics are closely related to sustainability, they should not be confused with it. That is why I wrote an article with the biggest myths and facts about sustainable fashion.

Myths and facts about sustainable fashion

1. Sustainable fashion is too expensive. MYTH

FACT: Sustainable fashion from responsible brands requires a higher investment due to the use of quality materials, fair compensation of workers and research behind each product, but it is not unaffordable. Alternatives such as second-hand shopping or using rental shops allow access to sustainable fashion at lower prices. Quality and sustainable pieces can be found at a fraction of the original price, making sustainable fashion accessible to a wider public.

2. We use recycled polyester or organic cotton, we are sustainable. MYTH

FACT: Although using certified sustainable materials such as organic cotton or recycled polyester is a positive step, it does not automatically mean overall brand sustainability. Sustainable fashion requires a comprehensive approach that includes not only the choice of materials, but also the way they are processed, the working conditions during production, the impact on the environment and the overall strategy of the product life cycle. True sustainability comes from in-depth analysis and responsibility at every stage of the production process, from initial design to recycling or disposal of products.

3. Only one direction in sustainable fashion is best. MYTH

FACT: There is no single "best" way to practice sustainable fashion. Each method, be it tailor-made, upcycling, second-hand purchases or sustainable collections from brands, has its advantages and disadvantages. Diversity and collaboration are key. Building a new sustainable fashion ecosystem means providing consumers with a wide range of options and supporting different approaches that together contribute to a better and more sustainable fashion industry. The goal should be to find solutions together, not to compete for who is more "sustainable".

4. Made in the Czech Republic. It means that the product originated from AZ locally. MYTH

FACT: The label "Made in the Czech Republic" often does not include the entire production process. Although the final production of the product may take place in the Czech Republic, most of the raw materials and some key production steps, such as fiber processing or dyeing, usually take place outside the Czech Republic. For example, organic cotton fabrics may be woven in the Czech Republic, but their basic raw materials and further processing may come from different parts of the world. For true sustainability and ethics, transparency of the origin of materials and the overall production process is key. An exception may be, for example, regional wool.

5. Luxury brands are more sustainable and ethical. MYTH

FACT: The assumption that the higher price of luxury brands corresponds to higher standards of sustainability and ethics is a myth. Many luxury brands produce in the same factories as fast fashion, often without guaranteed ethical sourcing of materials or fair working conditions. Higher prices often reflect brand prestige and design, not necessarily sustainable manufacturing practices. Luxury brands can also commit greenwashing when they talk about sustainability without concrete evidence. It is important for consumers not to be guided only by price or brand, but to look for transparent information about the overall impact of products on the environment and society.

6. Second-hand clothing always reduces the carbon footprint of fashion. MYTH

FACT: Although second-hand clothing can be a more sustainable alternative, its impact depends on various factors. Transporting and processing these garments can consume energy and resources, while massive exports to developing countries can negatively impact local textile industries and contribute to more waste. Additionally, some second-hand clothing, especially those from fast fashion sources, may have a shorter shelf life. Although second-hand shopping may represent a more sustainable choice, it is important to consider the overall impact on the environment and the economy.

7. A sustainable wardrobe starts with cleaning out your closet and throwing things away. MYTH

FACT: Sustainable fashion isn't about throwing out existing clothes, it's about maximizing what you already own. Instead of discarding clothes from fast fashion, the key is to focus on their maintenance and use and wear as much as possible. A scientific view of sustainability emphasizes the long-term use of materials and the reduction of waste. This approach helps reduce the demand for new products and reduces the overall carbon footprint of the fashion industry. It is ideal to gradually supplement such a wardrobe with high-quality sustainable alternatives, instead of fast fashion pieces.

8. Sustainable fashion means minimalism or a capsule wardrobe. MYTH

FACT: Sustainable fashion involves cutting back on overconsumption and waste, but it doesn't require a minimalist wardrobe. It is based on conscious consumerism, which does not mean a strict limitation of the number of pieces of clothing owned, but rather an emphasis on quality, long-term value and thinking about the impact of each purchase. The aim is to reduce negative impacts on the environment and society, which can mean different approaches for different people, not necessarily strict minimalism, simple cuts or a capsule wardrobe. Even sustainable fashion can be colorful and fun.

9. Donated clothes are always resold in charity or secondhand shops. MYTH

FACT: Only a small fraction of donated clothes (about 10-20%) are actually sold in charity shops. Most donated clothing is either recycled for industrial use, ends up in landfills (up to 62%), is incinerated, or is exported to other countries. Unfortunately, they often end up in landfills in these countries, especially in Africa. Effective recycling and management of clothing waste are key to reducing the overall impact of fashion on the environment and on the quality of life of people in third countries.

10. Upcycling is only about reworking old clothes into new pieces. MYTH

FACT: Upcycling involves a lot more than just turning old clothes into new ones. It is primarily a creative use of production scraps and textile remnants. These materials, which might otherwise be waste, can be transformed into new products, from accessories to works of art. Thus, upcycling not only reduces the amount of textile waste, but also expands the boundaries of creativity in sustainable fashion, promotes innovation and efficient use of materials.

Let's discuss

Sustainability in the fashion industry is much more complex and nuanced than it might seem at first glance. It is important that both consumers and producers are fully informed and aware of the real impacts and meanings associated with sustainable fashion.

A sustainable path is not about absolute truths, but about continuous learning, adaptation and striving for a better understanding of how our decisions affect our planet and society. With the growing interest and discussion about sustainability in the fashion industry, there are still many topics and questions that deserve further investigation.

Let us know what topic, myth or anything about sustainability you're interested in and we'll be happy to answer and include the item in the next Sustainability Myths and Facts section.