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‘Redress it, don’t

The 365 Challenge is a one-year secondh secondhand clothes, with outfits put toget

Every day this year, Christina wore dumpe supporting fashion stylists we released a out of landfill.

JANUARY WA R D RO B E E S S E N T I AL/ P1 Identifying your key wardrobe essentials ensures that your wardrobe is able to blend into a wide arrange of outfits.

MAY O N T R E N D/ P18 May shows you to mix and match items which are found in the bin to make you on trend!

SEPTEMBER R E PAI R / P4 2 September focuses on simple repair methods that can rekindle damaged-but-delightful clothes back into the fashion loop.

P e o s s

t bin it!’

hand clothing campaign seeing Redress’ Founder, Christina Dean, wear 100 percent dumped, discarded or donated ther by leading stylists to promote the ‘Redress it, don’t bin it’ concept.

ed secondhand clothing, sourced with support of partners, Friends of the Earth (HK). Every month, with the help of new guide to help consumers to rethink their relationship with clothes in order to keep them in the fashion loop and




Pur c h a s i n g dur abl e clo thes e ns u re s t hat we m ak e u se o f o u r c l othi ngs’ functio n sea s o n a f ter season after sea s o n .

Swapping is an environmentallyconscious and fun way to set unloved items free and back into the fashion loop

Simple tricks can completely ‘redress’ a discarded garment.





L ITTL E B L AC K D R E S S / P3 0

In pursuit of creaseless, hygienic and colourful wardrobes, consumers’ habits for washing, drying, ironing and dry-cleaning unleashes a portion of these negative environmental impacts, beyond the confines of our wardrobes.

OCTOBER SHOP SMAR T/ P 53 Practicing smart shopping and styling will give you a more sustainable wardrobe and save your time and money and reduce clothing wastage.

R E S T Y L I NG/ P3 6

July shows us that you don’t need hundreds of pieces of clothing to change your look or the way you feel, saving you money and reducing clothing waste in the process

August teaches us with a few simple tips, you can turn yourself into a seasoned holiday packer and lower your impact on the environment (and your back) by reducing your luggage weight



RE CO N S T RU C T I O N / P5 8 We collaborated with 10 fashion designers working in reconstruction from around the world to salute and celebrate fashion designer’s creative role in reducing clothing waste.

R E C YC L I NG/ P6 8 Christina’s personal experience to show how possible to dress sustainably, and to love your wardrobe, and embrace your own sense of style, so that you look as good as you feel on the inside, instead of being slave to trends and poorly made fashion.


Identifying your key wardrobe essentials ensures that your wardrobe is able to blend into a wide arrange of outfits. Covering stylish basics avoids purchasing piles of un-needed and un-matchable items, helping to keep your wardrobe (and landfills) well managed. The main things I kept in mind while rummaging through the shocking piles of quality throwaway clothes was ‘quality and feel’.


Tania is co-founder of an online eco-boutique, a compulsive traveller and occasional yogi. She was born in Moscow, brought up in Spain, educated in London and is now settled in Hong Kong. Having learnt about the dirty business of fashion, Tania with her partner Sam (who she met through blogging) decided that there must be an alternative. After failing to find an online store that combined ethics and aesthetics, they decided that they spotted an opportunity and so A Boy Named Sue was born.


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LOVABLE WARDROBE that you won’t wan t to di s po s e o f 1 // QUALITY OVER QUANTITY It’s not rocket science. One very good quality leather jacket or a merino wool v-neck will last you many seasons, whereas fast fashion will be ready for disposal in a few months, at best.

2 // FIND YOUR ESSENTIALS Different things work for different body types so there are no golden rules. But here are my best picks: Shorts, black/grey skinny jeans, navy or grey blazers, statement jacket, chunky vneck in grey and navy, fisherman knits, leather biker jackets, a good coat, two three silk shirts long enough to be worn un-tucked, but with a possibility of being tucked in. For some, the list is (unfortunately!) endless. But do choose five to six items from the list above and build your wardrobe around the key pieces.

3 // AVOID BEING TOO BLING When buying new pieces (or getting them from secondhand stores) think whether this piece goes with things in your wardrobe. Avoid things that are too trendy, too loud or have too much sparkle. Golden rule, if the piece doesn’t go with anything that you currently own — avoid it.


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4 // CHOSE A COLOUR SCHEME Select a colour scheme that suits you, with one for winter and one for summer. It’s always easier to work with three to four colours. Remember, ‘Simplicity makes your life easy’. If the colours in your wardrobe go together, I promise you will have less of those ‘I have nothing to wear’ moments. Here are my favourite combos: ▪▪ ▪▪ ▪▪ ▪▪

Grey / Navy / Grey / Navy / Red / White / Khaki / Black

Cream / Copper Red / White Cream / Black / Navy / Grey

5 // LEARN YOUR PROPORTIONS We all have different body shapes and not knowing what suits you best will lead to clothes being dumped into landfill. Here are my main tips: ▪ ▪ Shorts suit almost every shape ▪ ▪ Wedges (for the lazy) or heels (for the hardworking ones) always make you look more elegant ▪ ▪ A silk off white or navy shirt saves any situation ▪ ▪ Skinny jeans and flats are a lethal combination that only suits people with skinny legs ▪ ▪ If you have a narrow waist and large hips, use a belt to accentuate the waist


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Pu rc hasi ng dur ab le clo thes ensu res th a t we ma k e u s e o f o u r c lo t h in g s ’ f u n c t io n s e a s o n a f t e r season afte r se a son. S u ch dura b ilit y a llo ws u s t o d re s s re s p o n s ib ilit y a n d i n d o i n g s o reduce our c arb o n fo o tprint wh ilst s t ill lo o k in g a n d f e e lin g f a n t a s t ic .


J u lie ’s b a c k g ro u n d is a s d iv e rs e a s h e r e x p e rie n c e in f a s h io n . S h e is a mix o f I n d ia n , I t a lian a n d G re e k o rig in a n d s h e wa s ra is e d in t h e US a n d n o w liv e s in Ho n g K o n g . J u lie ’s s t y ling a n d p h o t o -s h o o t in g e x p e rie nc e in Ne w Yo rk f o r c lie n t s in c lu d ing P ro e n z a S c h o u le r a n d Ro u la nd Mo u re t , c o u p le d wit h h e r A s ian c lie n t s , Lane Cra wf o rd a nd Ha rv e y Nic h o ls , p ro v id e h e r wi t h a u n iq u e in s ig h t in t o t h is mo n t h’s t h e me o f d u ra b ilit y.


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“Since living in Hong Kong, with Mainland China and her rampant clothing production on my doorstep, I’ve become very sensitive about fast and trend-related fashion. We all recognize that high levels of fast-paced and cheap manufacturing lead to poorer quality clothing and, because of this, increasingly disappointing purchases. I’ve seen garments fall apart after one season, if that, because the stitching falls apart or holes develop or the garment looses its shape. What savvy consumers should be doing is avoiding cheaper purchases, which they buy on a weekly basis for example, and save their money up for two months so as to buy a higher quality purchase that lasts a lifetime…”




1 // FABRIC, FABRIC, FABRIC Al w ays star t w i th the fabric when decidin g t o p u rc hase a gar me n t. Fa b rics th a t look a n d f e e l dur abl e ar e the o n e s to g o fo r! L o o k f o r quality fabr ics th a t tend to last lo n g e r b e c a use of hig h e r co lour-fa stn e ss, y a rn s t re ngth and dura b ility. Org a n ic c o t t o n , p e a c e si l k and Tence l may la st lo n g and a re a l s o better for th e enviro n ment.

2 // TRIMS L o o k a t t h e b u t t o n s , f a s t e n e rs , z i p s a n d lin in g s a n d c h e c k t h a t t h e y d o wo rk . C h e c k h o w s t ro n g ly a t t a c h e d t h e b u t t o n s a r e t o t h e g a rme n t . Hig h q u a lit y b u t t o n s a n d s t r o n g a t t a c h me n t s e n s u re t h e y will n o t b rea k a f t e r a f e w wa s h e s . I n a d d it io n , a g o o d q u a l i t y g a rme n t s h o u ld u s e n ic k e l-f re e me t a l - w a r e .


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3 // STITCHING D o n ’ t be fool ed b y o u ter appeara n ces ! Tu rn y o u r gar m ent ins ide-o u t and lo o k at h o w t h e s i d e seam s ar e stitch e d togeth e r. A g o o d q u a l ity gar m ent will have se cure ove rlo c k s (s t i t ches sew n in a d iffere n t directio n t o t h e m a i n sti tchi ng) to keep th e main stitchin g in p l a c e . Tr y to pull the se a ms a p a rt s lig h t ly t o c heck the th read’s d u rability. F in a lly, s t i t c hing size does matter! W h e n in do u b t , s ma l ler sti tches me a n h igher q u a lit y a n d l a rg er stitches mean a ru shed jo b that ma y u n d o after a couple of wa shes.

4 // CUTTING DETAILS A g a rme n t t h a t is d e s ig n e d t o la st l o n g e r b y g o o d c u t t in g d e t a ils is a s ig n o f g o o d q u a lit y. F o r e x a mp le , g a rme n t s c u t o n t h e g ra in a n d p a n e le d in a wa y t o a d h e r e t o y o u r b o d y c o n t o u rs e n s u re s lo n g e v i t y a n d me t a l riv e t s u s e d t o s e c u re je a n s ’ p o c k e t s e n s u re t h a t t h e je a n s will h a v e a lo n g l i f e . F in a lly, wh e n in d o u b t , re me mb e r t ha t i f y o u lo v e t h e c u t a n d s t y le , y o u ’re mo re l i k e l y t o k e e p it f o r lo n g e r.

5 // QUALITY BRANDS Bu y i ng fr om a to p b rand th a t has inve s t e d t i m e and effor t to cre a te a garmen t is c ru c i al. Right from its creation, to p bra n d s s h o u ld pay car efu l considera tio n from t h e d ra w ing boar d, to se lectin g fa b rics, colo u rs , f i n i s hes, constr u ction a n d eve n pack a g in g . Th i s gi ves sati s factio n of buying a garme n t t h a t is br ought to yo u with in tegrity a n d q u a l ity so as to ma ke it yo u rs fo r a life t ime .


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Whether it’s size, colour, an unwanted gift, duplicated pieces or simply a loss of interest, most of us have unwanted clothes hanging at the back of our wardrobes that we feel too bad about throwing out. It’s estimated that around 30% of all clothes hanging in UK wardrobes haven’t been worn for at least a year and that 1 in 10 of us only wear 10% of what’s hanging in our clothes… Cue swapping…This is the simple act of swapping unwanted clothes and it’s become quite a hit with Swapping Parties, also called Swishing or Closet-Swaps, popping up all over the world as an environmentally-conscious and fun way to set unloved items free and back into the fashion loop.

S T Y L I S T: ANU P RE E T B H U I With over 12 years of experience working with the insides of fashion world like Levi’s, Anupreet comes with a strong eye that combines trend and quality with sustainability. Art in our everyday lives is her core design philosophy and she strives to create a look that donates effortless style. Anupreet loves to handcraft accessories with recycled materials and is passionate about yoga, natural healing and delicious vegetarian food.


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“One thing I love about getting ready to swap is the process of purging your wardrobe. As well as getting a good clear-out, it’s a great process of rediscovery of pieces and the memories that go with them.” — Lucy Shea

Lucy Shea, Founder of ‘Swishing’ Movement (

2 // ONE MAN’S TRASH IS ANOTHER MAN’S TREASURE ... “To take something others don’t want to wear anymore and turn it into something of my style is fun and playful.” — Ciga Zhou

“Everyone suits a different style and has different tastes. By swapping clothes, I can show that a garment can be made fresh and new again. I can also observe how my old garment has been brought back to life by someone else, which is very interesting!” — Helen Lee Ciga Zhou, Fashion Blogger (


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“Sometimes it’s difficult to let go of clothes that either have an emotional attachment or are of good quality and so it seems a shame to discard them. Swapping is a great solution to this, so you know they will be going to a good new home.” — Veronica Crespi

Veronica Crespi, Founder, ReWardrobe (

4 // AVOID FUELING A DEMAND FOR NEW FASHION “Swapping instead of buying helps to reduce the demand from factories to make more clothing.” — Cindy Ko

“You don’t need to consume to have a new style.” — Ciga Zhou

Cindy Ko, Fashion and Lifestyle Blogger (


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5 // HELP SPREAD THE MESSAGE TO OTHERS “Swapping educates people about reducing waste in fashion, which is so important. Most women in particular have something they don’t wear anymore sitting in their closets, but are not sure what to do with it.” — Yumiko Uno

Yumiko Uno, Designer for Etrican (

6 // DON’T ADD MORE WASTE TO LANDFILLS “I love swapping as it promotes the re-newal of aesthetics coupled with recycling.” — Johanna Ho

“An outfit may no longer fit your style or body shape anymore, but that doesn’t mean it won't be perfect for someone else. Besides helping me to avoid the creation of textile waste, swapping allows me to get something new and stylish in return! How can you not love this scenario?” — Helen Lee Johanna Ho, Fashion Designer, (


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7 // MAKE NEW FRIENDS “Swapping is a great social platform. I’ve been swapping for years in my circle of friends and I love that it enables me to meet many people with my same interests and tastes. It’s a perfect way to create a social network, and create more space in my closet and to fill with fantastic new swapped garments — all for free.” — Helen Lee

Helen Lee, Fashion Designer, ( designer_helenlee.htm)



“You can have a fun event, and you can get great advice from friends on what suits you, style each other and you may find yourself ending up with pieces that you perhaps wouldn’t normally go for.” — Lucy Shea

“It’s very nice to see some garments I don’t wear any more beingworn and appreciated by others as well as see others wearing my old pieces into a different way. It makes me feel content.” — Ciga Zhou


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DIY guru Geneva Vanderzeil took to the helm of The 365 Challenge to style Christina in DIYed clothes to promote the ‘Redress it, Don’t Bin it’ concept. Geneva, author of ‘DIY Fashionista’, shared (whilst we trialed) some of her top tricks to rework unwanted garments into straight-off-the-catwalk looks. We were impressed by how simple tricks, like cutting off a blazer’s stained and ill-fitting sleeves and re-dying a tired white skirt using tea bags, can completely ‘redress’ a discarded garment.


Geneva Vanderzeil is DIY fashion creative who is notorious around the globe for her blog, A Pair and a Spare. She is an avid believer in a creative approach to unwanted fashion items that result in fashion revitalization. Geneva, who is usually based in Hong Kong and from Australia, recently wrote her book, entitled ‘DIY Fashionista’ and she regularly features in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue amongst many leading international fashion magazines.


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Geneva’s 10 PROJECTS FOR DIY-ing


Possible reason for discarding: This white suit was outdated in style and oversized with speckled stains up one arm. DIY performed: The arms were removed.


Top tip: When removing the sleeves, make one gentle slit with scissors into the stitching that attaches the arms to the jacket and then tug and tear away the sleeves carefully from the body. Finishing is key to this to keep the qualitylook.

2 // BURBERRY LOOKALIKE JACKET Before Possible reason for discarding: This classic trench coat was outdated by its full length. DIY performed: Hemline altered to mid-calf length. Top tip: When altering a hemline, it’s best to wear the garment yourself and ask a friend to do your pinning to your desire new length. If you bend down to do your own pinning, your new hemline will be wonky!

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3 // BLACK JACKET Possible reason for discarding: This was an oversized jacket that didn’t have any shape or style.


DIY performed: A back portion of the jacket was removed, leaving a gap between the two back panels and a series of black elastic straps were inserted at the back. Top tip: Before cutting the back middle panel out, make sure you draw a straight line on the back panel with a long ruler and a tailor’s chalk to get your straight lines. When positioning the elastic straps, lay out the elastic to allow it to flatten and relax before attaching them onto the garment.


4 // DENIM SHIRT Possible reason for discarding: This good condition basic denim shirt was quite uninteresting and baggy.


DIY performed: Shoulder holes cut out. Top tip: Cutting out shapes is a fun and easy DIY makeover. Before you start cutting, it is the best to mark the cut-out shapes with a tailor’s chalk. If you drew the shapes wrong, don’t worry - just brush off the chalk marks gently and start again. After 14

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Possible reason for discarding: This shirt had a drab and dull appearance with the cut being very outdated. DIY performed: The neckline was removed to give it a modern V neckline.


Top tip: When altering a collar, make sure you wear the garment when creating the new collar so it will ‘sit’ nicely on you. In this instance, we folded the original collar in while the shirt was on Christina to create the V-shape neckline, then we secured the new shape with pins. Once we were happy with the shape, we ironed the new folds flat to see how the new neckline looked like before cutting.

6 // BLACK TUNIC DRESS Possible reason for discarding: This was a very well worn garment and its lining was tethered. DIY performed: Darts inserted into the backside seams. Top tip: Pin and iron your darts well to check the fit before you do the final sewing. It can be fiddly to do darts with lining, so you could consider removing the lining to make your life a little easier.



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7 // WHITE SKIRT Possible reason for discarding: The white skirt had speckled rusty looking stains on it.


DIY performed : The skirt was dyed using natural dyes and in this case — tea bags! Top tip: Before dyeing, make sure you soak your garment in water and a few tablespoons of salt for a good hour. This allows the dye to be absorbed evenly later. We used 8 teabags and approximately 1 litre of water for this skirt. Be prepared to re-dye with time as natural dyes do not ‘fix’ as well as chemical dyes.


8 // FULL LENGTH STRING STRAP BLACK DRESS Possible reason for discarding: The length of this dress wasn’t ontrend nor flattering.


DIY performed: The dress’ hemline was raised to knee length.


Top tip: Hemline alteration is one of the most straight-forward DIY tips and a great way to update an out-of-trend garment. Remember – a straight hemline is key to make your DIY projects looking professional. To get a perfectly straight hemline, please follow Project 2.


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9 // WHITE NAUTICAL SHORTS Possible reason for discarding: These shorts were quite dull and lifeless and cheap-looking.


DIY performed: Some blue denim was inserted into the pockets from project 4, as a dash of colour lining to give the shorts a more updated look. The beige plastic button was removed and changed with a more classy brass button for some extra style.




Possible reason for discarding: This skirt was in great condition, although the inner lining was a bit torn. DIY performed: We removed a few centimetres off the hemline and replaced this with some ribbon. Top tip: We used a wide grosgrain tape, which is similar to a ribbon, to add some small details to this otherwise quite basic skirt. When buying your new trims, make sure you take your garment with you so you can complement the two materials for colour and thickness.

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Vivian Lau currently works as a Fashion Editor for, one of the leading online fashion and beauty magazines in Hong Kong. A fashionista from an early age, she grew up reading fashion magazines and was influenced by different cultures after spending her adolensence in the United States. Vivian shares her insight on fashion and lifestyle everyday by writing articles on


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S ou rce: l uxo


Floral prints are a classic look for summer. Choose floral patterns that are girly but not granny-looking. A feminine touch of floral to an androgynous denim outfit can bring so much more to the eye.


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A classic black-and-white combo is a timeless and edgy look that works for every shape and style. Monotone garments are staples in every wardrobe and are easy to mix and match. To accentuate the proportion and monochrome look of an outfit, simply throw in some black accessories to an all-white ensemble and you’re good to go.

S ource: met rove lvet



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S ource: Pin tere st


Infuse more energy into your outfit by incorporating athletic wear into your summer wardrobe. Show off your style by draping a sports jacket over your shoulders and pairing it with a simple white tank and denim shorts. This is a casually chic look that never goes out of style.


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Does your blazer look drab and boring on a hot summer day? Pair it with a mini skirt to add a touch of sultry while keeping it classy at the same time. A blazer is a classic yet versatile piece that can take you from day to night for any occasion. Wear your blazer with a classic pencil skirt for a sophisticated evening look or roll-up the sleeves for a casual summer day look.

S ource: th el o ca lq



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It is thought that 80% of the environmental impact created by clothing is caused by… us! In pursuit of creaseless, hygienic and colourful wardrobes, consumers’ habits for washing, drying, ironing and dry-cleaning unleashes a portion of these negative environmental impacts, beyond the confines of our wardrobes. These include water consumption, carbon dioxide emissions and toxic chemical usage, all of which make caring for clothes one of the most environmental polluting of all consumer goods. Although this may sound negative, we think this is great news because, with the right information and education, consumers have the power to take charge and lessen clothing’s environmental impact from their very own homes. Take a look at our video in collaboration with Miele, and see our tips that will leave your wardrobe delighting in a breath of fresh, sustainable air.

STY LI ST: k at e jo ne s, c R E ATI V E C ONS U LTA NT, mIE L E Kate Jones is a Creative Consultant and self-proclaimed laundry geek. New Zealand born, Kate has spent the last eight years working in Hong Kong and Shanghai in the varied worlds of fashion and sportswear, among others. Through her consultancy with At Liberty, Kate works in-house with the Miele Hong Kong team, which is a perfect home for her passion for laundry care that cares for clothes’ longevity. Kate’s interest in tinkering with sustainable stain removal techniques and washing machine settings, coupled with her scrubbing brush and some elbow grease, are a natural fit to style June’s focus on sustainable consumer care. When not lovingly laundering clothes for this challenge, Kate can be found dreaming up creative strategies for other clients and running her own event space and watch boutique, Time & Space. Here, this modern day, style icon for considered, conscious and cleaner wardrobes shares her tips...


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Miele’s Kate Jones’ 7 top ways to become

a sustainable launderer

1 // Wear your clothes multiple times before washing People are in the habit of washing their clothing after just one or two wears, when the clothes are barely dirty. Try to wear clothing as many times as possible before washing, as this will save water and energy from fewer loads. If we all washed our clothes 10% less, we could have a 2.6% reduction in our global footprint of carbon dioxide! 3


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2 // Avoid using the dry cleaners, wash at home responsibly Most dry cleaners use a cocktail of harmful chemical contaminants, which cause environmental and health problems. This is all very unnecessary, as 90% of your wardrobe is actually washable! 2 Try hand washing or a very gentle / hand-wash cycle on your washing machine with your garment turned inside out and inside a protective garment bag.

3 // Use eco-friendly cleaning detergents at correct dosage Many people over-dose their washing machines with chemically-laden detergents in a wasted effort to clean their clothes. The carbon footprint of an average family from just using laundry detergents is equal to 4.5 kilograms per week! 4 Developments in the detergents’ cleaning capabilities mean they now work better than ever before. Use the correct dose and choose a more ecologicallyfriendly detergent.


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4 // Wash at cool temperatures

A whopping 90% of the energy used for washing clothes is used to heat the water, with the remainder used to power the washing machine motor. 1 Washing at cooler temperatures (30°C works fine for most) saves energy costs for you and greenhouse emissions for the environment. Everyone wins!

5 // Wash at full load It’s not rocket science — run your washing machine at full load. The average household does almost 400 loads of laundry each year, consuming 13,500 gallons of water. 1 Not only does a full load decrease the amount of cycles you need to do, but washing machines are also most efficient when full.


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6 // Air dry your clothes Air dry your clothes to reduce your energy consumption and your energy bills, whilst protecting your clothes. (Would you like to spin at full speed around a dryer!). Of all our home appliances, tumble dryers are the most energyhungry and each dryer load uses the same amount of energy as it takes to power a laptop for approx.—167 hours! 5

7 // Treat your stains before washing People often fail to realize that stains can be removed! One in 10 people have not worn an item of their clothing because they are unsure how to treat stains through washing3. Sometimes stains may be stubborn, but with perseverance, most can be removed!

Here are quick tips to stain removal using what’s already in your kitchen... 1. Pre-treat stains with baking soda (see example below) or using stain removers. This will prevent lots of unnecessary washes or wasting a perfectly wearable item of clothing. 2. Soaking stinky clothes in a vinegary water mix can rid them of odors 3. If you get chewing gum on fabric, place it in the freezer for a few hours before trying removal to avoid a stringy mess 4. For coloured stains like berries or wine, soak in lemon juice or white vinegar to help lift the stain from fibres 27

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METHOD with a helping hand from Miele Don’t let a stain get between you and your clothes. Far too often, consumers give up on clothes just because of stains removed with the right ingredients and a bit of elbow grease! Check out these handy tricks to destain clothes back to their former glory.


water baking soda stain brush



Create a stain-busting-solution by mixing 1 part baking soda with 3 parts water

Dab the resulting paste-like solution onto the stain and use a brush — a tooth brush or nail cleaning brush will work - and gently scrub at the stained area 28

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Place the garment into an empty bucket and pour hot water, from a high point so reach your arm up high as your pour, onto the stained area

Leave the garment in the bucket to soak for 1 hour, or 30 minutes maximum for delicate garments

5 Then simply check your garment’s care label and follow the suggested normal washing instructions.

after Reference: 1 “How to Go Green: Laundry.” TreeHugger. Web. 24 May 2013. 2 “Wash and Go.” Vogue Oct. 2012: 248-50. Web. 24 May 2013. 3 “Valuing our clothes.” Waste & Resources Action Programme. Web. 26 May 2013. 4 “Six Products, 6 Carbon Footprints.” The Wall Street Journal. Web. 26 May 2013. 5 “What’s the carbon footprint of...” Theecologist. Web. 26 May 2013. 29

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Do you constantly look in your wardrobe and declare I’ve got nothing to wear? You may be surprised by what you can create from your current wardrobe. For July, The 365 Challenge took a creative journey, styled by Shanghai stylist Claire Zhang, looking at ways to wear the ubiquitous Little Black Dress, which most women have stashed away in their wardrobe. July shows us that you don’t need hundreds of pieces of clothing to change your look or the way you feel, saving you money and reducing clothing waste in the process. Our Little Black Dress month was inspired by Sheena Matheiken’s ‘Uniform Project’, where she wore a black dress for an entire year in inspiring ways that demonstrated to us the versatility of this basic garment.

S T YLIS T: CL AIRE Z H A N G Claire Zhang is a fashion designer and stylist based in Shanghai. She works with international advertisement and event companies on performances, fashion shows and commercials. She is frequently invited by photographers and magazines for different fashion related projects owing to her strong sense and of creativity. Claire started her own fashion studio and launched her first apparel line, TUTTO CLARA, in 2007. She loves all things vintage and gets inspired by vintage looks. Claire describes the little black dress as the ‘must-have transition piece for every wardrobe’. She believes that fashion should evolve back to being a long-lasting and versatile product and that good styling can make everybody look smarter and unique.


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Claire’s tips to getting the most from your


1 // POWER PRINTS Pick up patterns and prints and go big on drama. You can get a bit bolder in your print mixing, with brighter colours and more graphic prints, with your little black dress as a base part to soften the clash impact. The key to working prints together is to watch quality and fit.

2 // NIP AND TUCK Try experimenting with the length of your dress for different occasions. A few strategic safety pins or a simple tack stitch will temporarily change your little black dress into an entirely new look. Alternatively to pinning or tack stitching, you can fold and catch the skirt under a chunky belt for the same effect.


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3 // BE WEATHER PROOFED The little black dress is garment that transitions well across seasons as the weather changes. Simply throw on a cardigan or jacket to keep warm or belt up a trenchcoat for a chic look in the city on rainy days.

4 // MORE THAN A DRESS... Don’t forget, a dress doesn’t have to be worn exclusively as a dress — it is the opportunity to express individuality. Turn your litte black dress into a tunic by pairing up with leggings or pencil pants, wear it open as a jacket, fold it over to become a skirt or even wear it back to front. Use your own creativity and imagination to make it look amazing and unique. Having the chance to put your own spin on your little black dress is the one of the best aspects about having one! 32

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51 // EMBRACE Embrace Colours COLOURS A well-placed splash of colour can go a long way in transforming your little black dress. Be aware of colour trends and how they evolve but try to remain an innovative trendsetter by taking risks when it comes to your personal intuition and chic sense of style. Summer is the season to experiment with bold and bright colors, wearing bright shades allows us to indicate our awareness of trendy style without losing layers.

6 // EXPERIMENT WITH TEXTURES Don’t be afraid to mix different textures together. Create diversity and eyecatching contrast for your little black dress by mixing different fibres and fabrics. Try a chunky wool knit or a leather jacket with dark wash denim over a satin little black dress. A rolled up sleeve will provide the perfect amount of exposed skin to show off some accessories.


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7 // LAYER UP Another tip to avoid boring looks is layering. Play around with your blouses, blazers, cardigans, collars, scarves or shorts by mixing them together. It is time to dig out those forgotten gems hidden in the back of your wardrobe! Trying out different combinations of colours and lengths can make your little black dress outfit look ‘just right’. Remember, the thinner the fabric is and the more variations there are in the dress’ length means that your layering will become easier...

28 // // The THEArt ARTofOFAccessorizing ACCESSORIZING Don’t be afraid to go big with accessories and alter the look of your dress. It’s easy to make an ordinary outfit look great and bring it up-to date with the right accessories. Start by thinking of one key accessory item that will elevate the look to a new level and then build around this. Even one piece of statement jewelry or a simple scarf can add that finishing touch to an outfit. But watch out and be mindful of the delicate balance between just right and overdone. In general, three or four items that don’t compete for attention should play nicely together. 34

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9 // HAVE FUN WITH THEMES Time to be imaginative and have fun! If you need inspiration for everyday looks, experiment with the little black dress by picking a specific theme or a current trend. Try cowgirl, sporty, bohemian, or retro, play with the accessories and makeup. Remember, little black dresses can be fun...

DRESS UP + DRESS DOWN 310////Dress down Dress up Busy lifestyles require mastering the skill of transforming a look between occaisions so that you can transition from the daytime office to an evening out. This will give you bags of fresh confidence without the need to lug a complete new outfit in your bag. By only changing shoes and handbag can turn your look from casual to formal. Heels and a shiny necklace add evening glam to your little black dress. You can’t go wrong with a cocktail ring and clutch. Whether you like to rock pops of colour, or a classic string of pearls, have fun with style and give that dress a great night out on the town. 35

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When preparing for a holiday, many of us are propelled into last minute wardrobe worries, with impulse purchases often going unworn or ending up being only suitable for just a few short days during our holiday. Over-packing is common. But with a few simple tips, you can turn yourself into a seasoned holiday packer and lower your impact on the environment (and your back) by reducing your luggage weight — simply by making the most of a few key holiday items through restyling. To explore this, we headed to the TRAID recycling warehouse in London with stylist, Reemé Idris, to create a minimal holiday wardrobe consisting of 16 garments and 3 pairs of shoes that would satisfy one month of diverse travel destinations from sailing in UK, cycling in France, and a glamorous voyage to Italy.

S TY LI ST: R e em é I d r i s

Reemé is a London based freelance fashion stylist, trends researcher and event producer. She created We Are {The Collective} to connect handpicked teams of freelance creatives with brands, agencies and retail landowners to provide agile and adaptive production services. Having worked on behalf of clientele including Britain’s Next Top Model, Men’s Health (UK), Marks & Spencer, Virgin Media, TEDx Houses of Parliament and One New Change, she is currently building her own retail concept. She believes solo (and light!) travel is great for inspiring creative thinking.


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ReemÊ’s key TIPS to refining the art of low impact holiday wardrobes 1 // MAKE MORE OF LESS



Evening Glam

While holiday packing is always tricky, the choices you make when giddy with holiday excitement influence your whole trip. Think about what you used most in your last trips. Lay out your planned holiday wardrobe and count the potential restyling combinations to dress from day through to evening and from beach to city. The aim is more looks with less items! Smart packing helps to avoid heavy luggage, which can reduce the negative environmental impact of your journey.


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Wrapped Skirt


Cover Up

Saris, or any large piece of fabric that you have in a colour or pattern that you can mix and match with your other pieces, are versatile holiday gems. You can cut up and re-hem the fabric into large, medium and small pieces to form a sarong/cover-up, mini skirt/wrap and hair scarf respectively. If you’re not so handy with a needle and thread, the cost of a seamstress will be nominal in comparison to buying the corresponding number of items off the rack. Plus, saris often have beautiful trims, which you can take a piece off for a lighter alternative to a belt or hairband. 38

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Avoid big patterns that make a statement and that you will only want to wear once or twice before all your holiday snaps start looking the same. Go for one palette of shades that will mix and match easily, with just a few ‘highlight items’. A white shirt in a comfortable, breathable fabric can be worn on the plane, over a bikini, knotted casually at the waist with a sarong for lunch or dressed-up for dinner.

Don’t go crazy with pre-holiday impulse shopping. It’s nice to have one or two new things, but never shop last minute unless you know exactly what you need. Comfort is important. Knowing what fits and suits you is better than throwing a whole bunch of outfits, with their tags still on, into a suitcase. Relying on whim purchases may mean you may never wear such items again.


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There is nothing more frustrating than getting to your holiday destination to find your favourite item is un-wearable after becoming scrunched to within an inch of its life — with no iron in sight! Go for fabrics that allow the majority of creases to drop out if hung overnight, especially if hung near a steamy bathroom. Plus, you can roll your clothes as you pack them to minimize creasing in the first place.

Shoes are heavy and take up valuable suitcase space and can become a packer’s worst enemy. My advice is to pick three to four key pairs, such as comfy pumps, flip-flops, a pair of sandals and some heels if necessary, to see you through your holiday. Consider sticking to metallic and neutral shades, which you can throw on with anything in your suitcase, for maximum versatility.


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I pack with a similar sense of organization that I use to prepare a fashion shoot. After laying out my options and getting an idea of my outfits, I place my clothing in one side of the suitcase and my shoes, bags and books in the other side. I use cloth bags to segment bikinis and underwear and bring a spare cloth bag for dirty laundry. I place toiletries in the front compartment and carry any jewelry and accessories in my hand luggage. It might sound quicker to ‘just throw’ things in your suitcase, but I’ve learned that my systematic packing method saves the most time whilst travelling, especially if you’re staying in more than one place.


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SEPTEMBER As September rolls in and the world’s fashion industry focuses on what’s new for Autumn/Winter, with infamous ‘September Issues’ luring us into new trends, we’re focusing on celebrating simple repair methods that can rekindle damaged-but-delightful clothes back into the fashion loop. So, this month we threaded our needles and mined haberdashery treasures with Zoe Robinson of The Good Wardrobe. Zoe helped us to brushup our sewing skills in order to keep our wardrobes in a good state of repair and save more unnecessary garments from ending up in landfills.

S TY LI ST: Zo e R o b i n s on

A reformed shopaholic, Zoe is now an ethical fashion advocate and charity shop addict who would rather repair a garment than buy a new one. Zoe is founder and director of The Good Wardrobe, an online community hub mixing the best ‘conscious’ fashion with services that prolong the life of clothes. Last year Zoe was appointed a London leader by the London Sustainable Development Commission and this year was shortlisted in the Observer Ethical Awards Well dressed category.


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ZOE’S 10



A rip or tear at the seam of a pencil skirt is frustrating and a common problem on delicate fabrics as tension is put on this area every time we walk (or after one too many lunges on the dance floor!). When a rip is beyond normal repair, use the opportunity to create a new feature by covering it up with something beautiful. We revived this damaged simple black dress by sewing a strip of sequined ribbon, running all the way down the back of the dress, , to make it more of a statement piece . If you don’t have a machine, you could carefully stitch by hand or take to a seamstress. Tip: Before you start the repair, to prevent further damage, iron on a similar weight interfacing to reinforce. 43

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With delicate fabric like lace, an invisible repair can be difficult. For this stretch-lace dress we looked for a trim in the same colour and pattern as the dress’ fabric in order to cover and strengthen the damaged area. Before sewing on the trim, machine stitch very carefully around the offending hole or iron on some interfacing to prevent any further damage. Following this, sew on the trim like a ‘patch’ by hand or machine. Tip: Remember to take your garment with you to the haberdashery to make the correct match. It’s also worth buying a little more trim than you need in case the damage occurs again on another part of the garment.


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Garments are often discarded due to hems coming loose. Learning how to sew a blind hem by hand takes care and patience at first, but will save you money at the tailors. Make sure your thread colour matches your garment. If in doubt and you can’t find an exact colour match, select a thread that is a shade darker than the garment. For the machine savvy, many modern sewing machines will have a blind hem stitch function. Tip: Remember to pin and iron the hem before stitching to ensure the hemline is straight! 45

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This dress had a rip near the side seam. Luckily it was was too big for Christina so we were able to take the dress in by a few centimeters on both sides and in doing so the ripped seam was hidden within the new seam. This type of repair is a simple job for a tailor, but also easy to do at home with the help of a sewing machine and a few pins! A cheaper option than buying a new dress! Tip: When doing alterations, take care not to make a garment fit too snugly, especially on a delicate fabric, as it could rip again.


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Losing a button is a common reason for a piece of clothing to go unworn. A great many garments go unworn simply because a button has fallen off — not a binning offence! This is one of the quickest and easiest repairs out there, so get your needle threaded and get stitching. For this pair of shorts our button was hanging on by a thread — so we simply cut it off and started again. Tip: Keep an eye out for loose buttons — make sure you secure them before they fall.


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Sequined and beaded clothing can be beautiful, but a common problem, especially on inexpensive garments, is that they are often poorly constructed and trimmings can begin to unravel, even after just one wear. Tip: When you see a bead coming loose, find a thread that matches and fasten the loose bead by hand, ensuring your stitches are hidden beneath the beads.


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This bold print wrap skirt had a lot of life left in it, but because it was missing a button, it was un-wearable. We searched the haberdashery for a button that would complement the nautical theme, and opted for a shiny gold one. Make sure you check that the new button fits your button hole. Tip: Don’t like the buttons on a garment you already own? Replacing buttons is a great way of updating and transforming old items.


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8 // KNITS

Repairing damage on knitwear can be daunting, but once you get to grips with the repair basics, it can be really useful. Matching your thread is important unless you want to turn the damage into a feature. This cardigan had only come apart at the shoulder seam so a simple, secure straight stitch made it wearable once again. Tip: Learning to darn can be very satisfying and equips you with the tools needed to keep your knitwear in top condition.


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It’s common for a well-worn coat or blazer lining to come undone, but it can be easily mended by hand. It’s worth taking your time and fixing it carefully, but as it’s on this inside of the garment (where no one will see if you make a mistake), it is definitely a repair anyone can have a go at. Tip : If you are still nervous about having a go, simply have a look on Youtube where there are a growing number of useful tutorials from how to thread a needle, to replacing a pocket or zip.


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Well-made shoes and bags should last for many years, but regular maintenance and cleaning are necessary to keep them in tip top condition. For our accessory repairs, we replaced these tatty handles with new leather ones and made these platforms as good as new by re-gluing the sole. Get acquainted with your local cobbler for heel and sole replacements. Tip: Keep an eye out for heel tips or soles wearing down. If you leave them too long before repair, irreversible damage can be caused to the heel itself.


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Many of us have over-shopped for poor fashion choices. These may have seemed a good idea at the time of purchase, but in reality, these buys subjected our wallets and wardrobes to clothes didn’t fit or suit us. Such bad buys can then fester in drawers or perpetually in the ‘tried on but rejected pile’, before possibly being discarded. Instead, practicing smart shopping and styling will give you a more sustainable wardrobe and save your time and money and reduce clothing wastage.

S TY L I ST: C h a r l otte F e l i x O’C on or, S tyl e ca b

Charlotte’s interest in fashion began at a young age when she ‘reworked’ her grandmother’s Christian Dior suits. Later, she swapped her career in television for fashion when she moved from London to Sydney. There, she launched the Australian edition of Where to Wear, the insider’s guide to fashion, and she set-up a personal shopping service. Following her next move to Hong Kong, Charlotte established Stylecab, a consultancy offering styling services from personal shopping, wardrobe maintenance to exclusive style packages with VIP stylists for private clients. Stylecab now has a network of stylists in London, Paris, New York, Shanghai and Sydney and they are currently developing an online style app, which will launch in early 2014. For more information, please see


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STYLECAB’S ‘SHOP SMART’ TIPS For styling 1 // MIX IT UP We tend to wear the same clothing combinations and we don’t maximize the potential for versatility already present within our wardrobes. Try playing around with a few smart and casual looks using the same skirt or top. Dress a skirt up for a night out with heels and accessories and dress it down with sneakers and a jumper for the weekend. Similarly, trousers can easily be dressed up or down with different shoe and top options. Buying versatile clothing that has multiple ways of wearing and styling it is always a bonus. Here we used a dress as top by pairing the dress with a skirt.

2 // BE CREATIVE WITH ACCESSORIES A few well-placed accessories will freshen up clothes you already have in your wardrobe. This can also bring you on trend without having to buy new clothes, saving you money. A touch of neon can liven up muted grey tones, adding a belt changes the silhouette of a dress and a chunky necklace can change a top’s neckline.


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3 // KNOW YOUR BODY SHAPE Know what suits your body shape so you don’t buy items that you end up regretting and never wearing. Take note of what you are wearing when you receive compliments. Trousers cropped to the ankle are a flattering length for all body shapes. High-waisted trousers will lengthen legs for those with shorter legs. Different materials flatter different shapes. For example, soft jersey fabric is versatile as it can be worn ruched or draped along the bias and still be figure hugging and flattering for most body types. With skirts and dresses, avoid hemlines that stop at the widest part of your leg. Instead, raise or drop the hemline so that your skirt or dress is more flattering. Belts are a great way to play around with silhouettes and flatter your curves. Always wear clothing that feels comfortable, so that you look and feel comfortable and confident!

4 // KNOW YOUR SKIN TONE Understanding what colours work best with your skin tone will better guide your purchases. Cooler skin tones have blue and pink undertones. They look best with a grey and navy base and peacock green and blue, pink and purple. Warmer skin tones have golden or apricot undertones. They look best with a neutral, charcoal and black base and deep rich shades, such as olive green, pillar box red and mustard yellow.


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For shopping 5 // IN THE MOOD FOR SHOPPING Avoid shopping when you are stressed, in a low mood or in a hurry. When you make a bad fashion buy, remember what went wrong and learn from it. For example, gravitating towards big beautiful patterns in the sales is not much use if you only wear solid colours. Buying smaller sizes, with the future plan to lose weight, may end in disappointment and wastage. Think twice before repeating these mistakes. Consider shopping on your own, instead of with friends as most women tend to do, because friends may agree to clothes for you that are not right, simply because they personally like the colour or pattern.

6 // THRIFT SHOPPING You never know what you will find when thrift or secondhand shopping. The best advice is to look for good quality materials and patterns. Denim is a good choice — it only gets better with age! Don’t be afraid to try things on. If in doubt about sizing, buy larger sizes rather than smaller to allow for adjustments or DIY. Thrift shop location is important! Thrift shops in less trendy locations or where there is an older population can provide unexpected vintage finds! Buying distressed denim shorts new is a waste of money. Simply cut off an old pair of jeans that you already own or find some in a thrift store. Remember to cut the outside of the leg slightly higher than the inside for the most leg-lengthening fit.


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7 // THE RESERVE & RETURN Are you an over-shopper? The average British woman has six pieces of unworn clothing in her wardrobe. Use the ‘reserve’ rule. If you like a piece but can’t decide if it goes with other clothes in your wardrobe, then ask to reserve it for 24 hours until you know it will mix and match well. Use the ‘wear within a week or return for a refund’ rule to avoid unworn wasted clothing and to remedy impulse buys. Remember to keep your receipts.

8 // THE WARDROBE REVIEW It is thought that wardrobes follow the 80:20 rule, where only approximately 20 percent of clothes are worn regularly. Do a ‘wardrobe review’ before a shopping trip, especially before the sales, to avoid impulse purchases. A wardrobe review will help you target your shopping and identify your shopping weaknesses and previous shopping mistakes. Plus, you may even find pieces for alteration and DIY, and therefore avoid the need for new purchases altogether! When shopping, many people gravitate towards similar items or colours and repeatedly buy clothes they already have in their own wardrobes. When shopping, avoid buying clothes that don’t match anything else in your existing wardrobe. Instead, make more of your wardrobe by buying one new key piece that compliments many items you already own.


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RECONSTRUCTION NOVEMBER THEM E: R E C O N STRU C TI ON It is thought that we consume approximately 60 percent more clothes today than we did 10 years ago. But as fashion consumption increases, so too does waste. It is estimated that 7.5 billion garments enter landfills every year around the world.1 Many discarded clothes are in good condition and still have great value. An estimated £140 million worth of clothes are dumped into UK landfills every year.2 As well as their value, these dumped clothes offer a sustainable and creative source of raw materials for fashion designers to reconstruct into ‘new’ clothes. We collaborated with 10 fashion designers working in reconstruction from around the world to salute and celebrate fashion designer’s creative role in reducing clothing waste. Reconstruction is the process of making ‘new’ clothes from previously worn garments or preformed finished products, and is sometimes also called up-cycling. Our 10 designers’ works demonstrate how reconstruction can transform discarded clothes into something ‘new’. This reconstruction process prolongs a garment’s lifecycle, keeping it in the fashion loop, and therefore slows down new textile production and the demand for natural resources. Next time you are looking to buy ‘new’ clothes, check out your local designers for reconstructed clothes.

1. Ginn, 2004 2. Valuing our clothes: the evidence base, WRAP, 2012


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Luise Barsch & Jill Röbenack, Germany Luise and Jill are old friends and designers who temporarily worked together at Berlin’s Upcycling Fashion Store and for the up-cycling brand, aluc. Luise got into reconstruction when she saw her friends throwing away their unwanted clothes and, concerned about the wasted resources and lost creative opportunities, she started remaking their discarded clothes into ‘new’ designs. aluc ( Upcycling Fashion Store (

“For the 365 Challenge, we reconstructed a large unwanted men’s silver suit jacket into two garments, the coat and the skirt. For the coat, we used the original suit jacket’s collar and button panel ‘as-is’ to form the reconstructed coat’s front panel. We then wove lots of strips of fabric, created from shredding various discarded shirts, into a mesh to form the bulk of the coat. For the skirt, we used the remainder of the leftover suit material.”

“When reconstructing, look for big suit jackets, as they are usually easy to find and provide lots of raw material to work with. Then be inventive! We love to reconstruct clothes so that you cannot tell what the finished garment originally was. And don’t forget that weaving wasted fabric strips is a great way to utilise waste and move towards a zero-waste practice.”


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Eileen Chan, Hong Kong Eileen has always loved vintage clothes and as a child she collected garments from flea markets to rework. Today, she focuses on simple silhouette pieces because these provide more room for adjustments and cutting in order to create individualistic designs.

The Yesterdayskin (

“For The 365 Challenge, I reconstructed dumped garments sourced from a large clothes recycling bin. I created the reconstructed shirt using two men’s shirts, which I cut in half and then added pleats to in order to create a more feminine shape. I then shortened the shirtsleeves to make the shirt look less formal and, as a finishing touch, added decorative tassels. I gave the original dumped skirt a fresher look by raising its hemline and adding a blue blocking panel to the hem. For the neckpiece, I reconstructed a dumped tie by adding folds and pleats and then added some gold tassels for a more delicate touch.”

“When reconstructing, it is important to be patient and to look carefully at your raw materials, in this case your pile of clothes, because exciting design details are usually hidden somewhere in them.”


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Lilah Horwitz, USA Lilah’s interest in sustainable fashion practices developed after having studied and worked with different fashion companies in New York. Following this, she became concerned about the amount of consumerdriven waste in clothing production and consumption and began to explore the rethinking of fashion towards greater sustainability. Lilah creates clothing that works to change our relationship with our garments to foster greater relationship value. Lilah Horwitz (

“For the 365 Challenge, I created a versatile three-garment outfit that can be worn in many ways to create multiple different looks, using garments sourced from secondhand clothing shops. For the turmeric yellow skirt, I reconstructed a coat and kept the original coat’s pocket details for an added design detail. For the reconstructed top, I used an unwanted denim shirt and some trouser legs to create the voluminous arms. I then created the black leggings by joining two sleeves of a discarded jumper.” “When reconstructing and sourcing from secondhand shops, pay attention to the fabrics themselves rather than the actual form of the clothes. Try not to look at the clothes as ‘clothing’, but instead like moldable pieces of clay. And remember, the larger the original garment the better because there is more fabric to work with.”


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Liora Lassalle, UK Liora grew up learning how to make the most out of what she had around her, so reconstruction and up-cycling have always been a way of life that makes sense to her. She loves texture and colour and her designs are often inspired by different cultures.

Liora Lassalle (

“For the 365 Challenge, I double layered two unwanted men’s shirts to create the cropped jacket. For the bubble dress, I double-layered two lace dresses.”

“When reconstructing, be flexible and smart about sourcing your textile waste. I source my materials from charity shops, car boot fairs and from textile factories’ surplus stock.”


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Naomi Maaravi, The Netherlands As a child, Naomi’s father taught her that every item has value. Naomi carried this with her and for her first reconstructed piece, she transformed her husband’s worn-out jeans into a dress for their daughter. Today, she loves reconstructing unwanted men’s clothes into feminine designs with a minimalist twist.

Naomi Maaravi (

“For The 365 Challenge, I transformed a pair of large men’s trousers into a flattering feminine shape by adding corset lacing and button details at the back. I reconstructed the shirt, keeping it simple and unisex, so that it is easy to mix and match.”

“When reconstructing, you need to really try to understand the product you’re designing and then think outside of the box. Every design is a challenge, but an exciting challenge.”


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Piret Mägi, Estonia Piret is a fashion design student who collaborated with Trash to Trend for The 365 Challenge project. Trash To Trend spreads knowledge and practical solutions about how the fashion industry can be more sustainable, with a strong focus on connecting designers with textile waste material providers in order to generate an alternative and more sustainable supply chain. Trash To Trend (

“For The 365 Challenge, I reconstructed various unwanted clothes sourced from two garment suppliers. For each reconstructed piece, I used two original garments and sewed them together. I made the jacket by reconstructing two pairs of unwanted trousers. I made the reconstructed white skirt using unwanted men’s shirts.”

“When reconstructing, remember that textile waste is still high-quality material and that your good design will add even more value to it.”


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Yuri Man, Hong Kong Yuri’s interest in sustainable fashion was further developed when she participated in The EcoChic Design Award sustainable fashion design competition. During this, her interest in textile waste reduction was raised and this inspired her to reconstruct and up-cycle textile and leather waste into her own well-crafted pieces.

Yuri Craft (

“For the 365 Challenge, I visited a large secondhand clothes recycling bin and selected three dumped wool-knit jumpers to work with as raw materials. I used elements of each of the three jumpers to create this one ‘new’ reconstructed jumper. To do this, I undid the original jumpers and then re-wove and knitted them together and I used the spare yarn to create the stripes at the front of the jumper.”

“When reconstructing, I think it’s important to be brave and to think outside of the box. You can patchwork fabrics with different crazy prints and bold colors onto a mannequin to see how it drapes and looks.”


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Ivett Simon, Australia Ivett thinks the process of how something is made ultimately defines an object’s beauty. For her, when something is made with love, care and wholesome ingredients, you get a product that is truly beautiful. This deep appreciation of a product’s supply chain lead Ivett to get more involved in sustainable and ethical fashion and shifted her design processes to be socially and environmentally sound. Halasi (

“For the 365 Challenge, I reconstructed an unwanted suede trench coat into a completely different structured top and skirt. To do this, I created a unique interlocking system, whereby any fabric or garment as a raw material can be transformed into something completely new. For this, I cut the fabric up into small, repeating pattern pieces and I then interlocked the small pieces together to create a whole new garment.”

“When reconstructing, you need to keep an open-mind towards the randomness of the selection of clothes available to you as raw materials. When looking for raw materials in secondhand shops, try on everything that is slightly interesting because you might be surprised by the fit of some garments. Trust your instincts; something you thought you would never wear might become a revolutionary raw material item for you.”


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Ariel Tobey, Australia Ariel got involved in sustainable fashion to order to reduce fashion’s impact on the Earth’s finite resources. He uses vintage and recycled fabrics to make something ‘new’ from something old, which reduces the release of chemical by-products and reduces natural resource depletion.

Remade by Bird Hands (

“For The 365 Challenge, I reconstructed a secondhand men’s shirt, which I sourced from a secondhand shop. To do this, I cut the original shirt at the side and shoulder seams and then I over-layed a paper-pattern onto the original shirt pieces. I then cut around the new pattern and put the shirt back together. The final design is a feminine and modern take on an old western classic!”

“When reconstructing, you always need to search for new ways to make better products. When you get a buzz from this process, you’re about to accomplish something exciting!”


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One year, 12 months, 365 days, , 256 articles of dumped clothing saved from the landfill: this was my year to live off other people’s discarded clothes, recycling them into my wardrobe. The year has given me 256 more reasons to be passionate about clothing waste reduction as a way to slow down our negative impacts on the environment. Fashion consumption continues to rise. Fast fashion has changed the fashion landscape, our wardrobes and our relationship with clothes. Today, clothes are fast-produced (80 billion new garments made per year from natural resources1) and fast-consumed (it’s thought we consume 60% more than we did 10 years ago) and fast-discarded (7.5billion clothing items go into landfill globally per year2). To some, buying clothes is like buying a Big Mac — quick, cheap and short lived. However, textiles are considered nearly 100% recyclable3, so nothing in the fashion industry should be sent to landfill. Keeping clothes out of landfill (through the 12 sustainable wardrobe themes we have explored this year) and in the fashion loop offers huge environmental savings, whilst allowing you to look great. Keeping your clothes for longer saves. It is estimated that extending the average life of clothes by just nine months would save £5 billion in resources used to supply, launder and dispose of clothing, not to mention the environmental savings4. But we all know it’s not enough to just create savings. We also all want to look good. I feel that this challenge has demonstrated that what people throw away is often very desirable. I have had numerous compliments over the year on the outfits I have worn, with many a surprised face when I mention they are from the ‘bins’! My personal experience has proved to me how possible and exciting it is to dress sustainably, and to love your wardrobe, and embrace your own sense of style, so that you look as good as you feel on the inside, instead of being slave to trends and poorly made fashion. The 365 Challenge — a year in review can be found on our youtube channel — RedressAsia


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CHRISTINA’S 6 TIPS to a LASTING, LOVING, SUSTAINABLE WARDROBE 1 // TAKE ACTION When you discover the facts around clothing production and wastage, it may come as a slap in the face, but one that should spur you into action to make more of the wonderful things you already own, and change your shopping habits. The one thing I have learned this year is that there is so much value and style left in the clothes we throw away. This can also be said for what may be lying redundant in the back of your wardrobes. Head to the Get Informed Section of the Redress Website to learn the basics and then roll up your sleeves and get sorting.

2 // GET DIGGING For the final month of the 365 challenge, I went through all of this year’s clothes and pulled out my favourites to wear again. One of the best places to start recycling is in your own wardrobe. Do a wardrobe review to be more aware of what you have and open your eyes to how much potential there is lurking in the back of your drawers. You may even find things you forgot you had which have, or reveal a repeat purchase habit that could change the way you think when you shop.


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3 // RE-INVENT WHAT YOU OWN Once you know what you have, identify your favourites (along with the things you never wear). Consider whether they are high quality and for the remainder, even if items don’t fit well, are broken, or stained they may still have potential left in them. Check out our 365 Challenge style guides from across the year and try your hand at restyling, repair, DIY Fashion, reconstruction, or treating stains (Sustainable Consumer Care).

4 // GET RECYCLING In the UK, an estimated £140 million worth of used clothing, estimated at around 350,000 tonnes, goes to landfill every year5. For what you don’t like and can’t re-invent from your wardrobes, it is time to set free, but is your garment ready for disposal? Your clothes may still have potential life in them, so don’t just bin them. Make sure you mindfully pass them on by sending them to the right place.

Did you know.. its estimated that of garments donated to clothing banks, only 50% are resold in stores or exported for second hand use. The remainder are sold to textile recyclers: shredding and re-spinning, textile fibre recycling; or fibres used for upholstery, car insulation, panel linings, paper, wiping and polishing cloths. Or Upcycled by a fab new breed of fashion designers6.

Why not hold a swapping party with friends? — A great way to switch your old items and get ‘new’ ones without adding to resource use from buying brand new. Alternatively search online for charity shops to recycle your garments back into the fashion loop, or textile banks to deposit your items in your local area for recycling to other items.


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5 // BUY SECONDHAND 1kg of re-used secondhand clothing instead of buying new can reduce up to 3.6kg of CO2 emissions, 6,000 litres of water, 0.3kg of fertilizers and 0.2kg of pesticides7. Next time you fancy a new item, why not check out your local vintage and second-hand stores first? With a bit of digging gems can be found, as we have shown this year in the challenge.

6 // SHOP SUSTAINABLE BRANDS Look out for recycled fibre content clothing in the shops, there are a growing number of high street brands now introducing this into their collections. Select designers are also working with waste, so support the positive steps being taken when buying new!

Join us and ‘Redress it, don’t bin it! Keep posted at our Instagram account for next years’ challenge. @getredressed


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Profile for Redress Asia

The 365 Challenge 2013  

The 365 Challenge 2013 was a one-year secondhand clothing challenge seeing our Founder, Christina Dean, only wearing 100% dumped, discarded...

The 365 Challenge 2013  

The 365 Challenge 2013 was a one-year secondhand clothing challenge seeing our Founder, Christina Dean, only wearing 100% dumped, discarded...