When it comes to sustainable fashion, the first thing you will be advised to do is re-wearing your own clothes. It’s free, it’s practical and you can get creative by looking for new outfit ideas with what you already have. However, revisiting your wardrobe time after time can make it lose its spark and you may get bored from it. That is why I think taking a look at your family’s wardrobe is the perfect idea to be sustainable and wear “new” clothes at the same time.
Many people share their clothes with their siblings or even with their parents. In fact, it is common for younger siblings (that’s me!) to take on their older siblings’ clothes once they grow up. However, I think most of us limit ourselves by either borrowing from people who have the most similar style to ours, or by only borrowing clothes from family members who are of similar age. This is why I will show you some of the reasons why visiting your brother’s wardrobe or even your grandmother’s can be useful and practical.
First of all, you can get very creative by mixing up pieces from different decades. It’s not as fun to style clothes that have only been in your wardrobe for two years as it is to style clothes that your mother has worn for twenty years. Before you think that her wardrobe can only be useful if you want to dress as if you were born in the 1980s, keep looking! Depending on your parents’ age you may find statement pieces from the 1960s, the 1970s and even earlier.
In fact, if you decide to pay your grandparents a visit or look at their wardrobe, you will definitely find marvellous pieces. From vintage dresses to classic suits, you will be amazed at what our relatives keep in their closets. Also, clothes that were made before the 1990s are usually of better-quality materials than fast fashion nowadays, so you can find long-lasting basics too.
Another bonus is that you can experiment by wearing pieces that are labelled for a different gender. It’s true that the lastest fashion trends advocate for the mix of men’s and women’s clothing, but the outfits don’t have to stop there. If you look into your father’s or brother’s wardrobes, you may find really cool shirts that are hard to get nowadays, low-rise and baggy jeans, or even accessories such as ties and suspenders that you can style with your own clothing.
Besides those two points, the simplest yet very interesting one is how you can style clothes that fit you too tightly or too loosely. It’s true that you may not share the same size with your family members, but that’s only another reason to get creative. If you tend to wear oversized clothing, you can try wearing some tight-fitted ones so you can experiment with it, and the same goes for the opposite. Also, if your relative doesn’t wear that anymore, you can always get it tailored to your size (which is probably cheaper than buying the same piece new).
Personally, I like wearing some of the pieces I borrow to go on my day-to-day life, but I also love taking advantage of the uniqueness of some of the clothing to prepare my own photoshoots. If you’re a photographer, model, or visual artist, you can always work with these clothes to explore themes for your art! These are some of the clothes I borrowed from my mom to create a monochrome look.
Ultimately, wearing pieces from your relatives can make you discover a different side of your personality while breaking the norm on what you should and should not wear. Plus, it’s free, and your family may be happy to finally get rid of clothing that they don’t wear anymore!