The average median income in the sixties was $5,000-$10,000 and $10,000- $15,000 in the seventies. When you do the math that meant that a family would spend $500 to $1,500 on clothes during those years, which was a lot of money in those days. During that time 70% or more of our clothes were manufactured in the USA using natural fabrics and employing high quality construction methods to ensure consumers got their money's worth. They were expected to last and people were more connected to where they came from, how they were made, because they were either employed themselves or had friends and family who worked in the industry. Most Americans knew what it took to create the garment and appreciated its value.
Starting in the 1970's the two terms begin merging, catapulting the fashion industry to the product we all know in today's modern age. Today, fashion is defined by words such as trend and style influenced by technology, political and social mimesis. Edna Woolman Chase once said, "Fashion can be bought, Style One Must Possess." I couldn't agree more. In the 21st century we no longer care to know where our clothes are made, who made them, what they are made of or even how to care for them because there are so many being made and we can just go buy something else at any time with little effort or money. We're living our lives fast and who wants yesterday's goods? Because of this mindset our world is crumbling around us; fast disposable fashion is the 2nd largest polluter on the planet, it negatively impacts our health and the environment in irreversible ways. Synthetic fabrics are unnatural, they don't feel good on our skin. Wearing them just seems void, empty and disconnected. Most of fast fashion is made from these fabrics.
Spoiler alert-the act of buying things will never fulfill a desire that's not truly your own. Especially, one that was fabricated, strategically crafted, made up and constantly put before you to make you believe it's your own. Take the time to recognize why you feel the way you do about shopping and buying clothes. Dig deep within yourself and ask three questions: what emotions do I feel when I buy clothes (unhappy-angry-depressed-jealous-guilt-defeated-poor-lonely-annoyed-sad-frustrated-etc.), what circumstance or event just occurred (promotion-illness-birthday/celebration-just got paid-loss of relationship-fight-disagreement-loss of job-rejected of something you thought you deserved-received something you feel you didn't deserve-etc.) and how soon did you wear the garment after buying. The first words or thoughts that pop into your head are your truths-write them down, then address each one that is negative, replace it with a positive emotion/thought. If you perceive the words to be positive, define what that positive perception really is for you-you may find that what you perceive as a positive is really a negative if it's connected to the wrong circumstance-reson-event. Once you've completed the exercise and your individual truths are revealed you'll begin to see how you've been behaving in a manner that's not true to Self and who you are-what makes you truly happy-what really satisfies you. Oftentimes, many realize it's nothing close to the behavior they have been displaying.
- First, realize that you can change the way you view fashion.
- Second, understand that materialistic and over consumption values are self defeating (you spend a lot of time and money shopping for things you don't like or will truly use- spend that time on doing something you love that will fill your spirit).
- Third, choose to be the master of your own mind, buy what you need, love, appreciate and give it value.
- Fourth, connect with Self, express your individual and unique style. Reject what's being dictated by the industry.
- Fifth, acknowledge the true purpose of marketing and just don't participate.