7 Steps to an Ethical Wardrobe

Here at TOM we’re all about making our eco-footprint lighter, from the food we buy to the cosmetics we put on our skin all the way down to the clothes we wear. Sometimes it can be hard to know where to start, so this week we’re looking at our wardrobes!


1. THINKING ABOUT FARIC. Find fabrics that respect the environment, from organic cotton, linen, silk, wool, or recycling old fabrics and turning them into something new again. It’s about knowing the processes involved in making the clothes, are the factories recycling their water, do they have access to alternative energy sources? Then there’s the ethical motivation, where are your clothes made? If not in Australia then what are the conditions in the factories? If the brand doesn’t advertise this information, ask them!


2. MAKE A CHOICE. There are brands who choose to have their wares made by fairly paid workers using the least amount of water and energy possible, without toxic or polluting treatments, dyeing processes or runoff. The never-ending list of organic and ethical accreditation standards across the world make it confusing to know what’s what, but standards such as GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) and Ethical Clothing Australia generally considered reliable.


3. BUY GOOD-QUALITY. It may seem obvious, but well-tailored ”classic” designs will last much longer than cheap bad quality items – you may even be able to pass them down to your children!


4. WASH LESS. Some items of clothing don’t need to be washed every time you wear them (jeans for example!) and when you do wash, do it at lower temperatures using environmentally friendly, biodegradable detergents. We live in a sunny country – take the time to hang your clothes in the sun and let them dry naturally.


5. TAKE A SEWING CLASS. Places like Thread Den in Melbourne and The Stitchery in Brisbane not only offer sewing classes, they host fashion swaps and discussions on how to “make do and mend”.


6. RECYCLE. Buy vintage clothes (not just because they’re awesome) it’s a great way to recycle, and when you have your wardrobe cleanout, give them to charity so they can be sold on too.


7. HAVE A PARTY. A glass of wine, some dinner and a clothes swap, get all your friends together throw your clothes in the middle of the room and rummage – this way you know they’ll end up in happy hands.


Some of our favourite ethical and environmentally friendly clothing brands include:



Gorman Organic

Sosume Clothing

Stella McCartney

Ginger & Smart

For more info on sustainable and ethical fashion check out:

Meet Your Maker

Moral Fairground

Have you got a favourite eco/ethical label? Or any tips of your own to share? We’d love to hear them in the comments below!

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