The effects of fast fashion

Craig of That Dapper Chap explores the effects that ‘Fast Fashion’ is having on our world and how we can make a difference

Image courtesy of BBC Hughes War On Waste

Question: What do you do with your clothes once you’ve decided that they’re not for you any more? Are you happy with how you dispose of them?

Let me ask you another question: How long do you think it takes for people in the UK to dump 10,000 old pieces of clothing, like the pile in the picture above? A year? A month? A week? Maybe even a single day?

The reality of ‘fast fashion’

If you said any of the above you’d be wrong. It takes just 10 minutes! So the next time you boil the kettle and make a cup of tea another 7 tonnes of clothing has been thrown into landfill. Think about that, while you sip your tea and enjoy a chocolate biscuit.

A Landfill site. Image credit; Global Green Group

Fashion is faster than ever. Clothing is cheap and therefore disposable and that’s just what a huge proportion of people are doing when they’ve had enough of a piece of clothing. Would it shock you to know that fashion is the worlds fastest growing waste stream?

Because demand for instant fashion is so high, makers are sourcing ever low cost resources to meet our demands. That often means creating garments from fabrics that have been dyed with cheap but toxic chemicals. the waste from which is disposed of in local water sources. Water sources that are then used in farming to feed crops, fruit and vegetables.

The effects could soon reach catastrophic proportions, so we all need to understand the issue as we all play a part in it as a brand or as a consumer.

Big brands make big changes

Because this is a global issue big brands like Burton and H&M among others are taking steps to mange this issue. Burton for example (part of the Arcadia group) have created the Fashion Footprint programme and state on their website that they will “produce fashionable products in an ethical way and demonstrate a responsible attitude towards people and the environment.

When customers buy our goods, we want them to be confident that they have been produced under acceptable conditions. That means the goods must have been produced:

* lawfully, through fair and honest dealing;
* without exploiting the people who made them;
* in decent working conditions; and
* without damaging the environment.


H&M have their own stance in combating this issue and people like you and I can now take our old clothes in to any one of over 3,300 of their stores.

Rethink, reuse and repurpose

So here’s where you come in. The brands are doing their part so you should too. There are many ways to stop your old shirt rotting in landfill for the next 10 years and I want to share a few with you now.

Donate it

Take your clothing to a charity shop, not only will you help a charity raise money for a good cause, but you’re also helping those with less income to keep clothes on their back. Many charities also post bags through our doors, don’t just throw that in the bin with your old Calvins, fill it and leave it outside. It’ll take just a few minutes and you also don’t have to worry about taking a trip to the charity shop.

If you shop at a supermarket, many of them also have recycling bins where you can donate your old clothes. Two birds, one stone! You always wondered what those big metal boxes were right?

Alternatively take a look at RecycleNow for more advice and details of local recycling points near you.

Repurpose or upcycle it

If you’re creative or know someone who is, why not turn something old into something new? Swithbert & Louis for example create wonderfully individual scarves from recycled clothing while others like Catherine Aitken are taking your old jacket and making a great new man bag.

Grab those scissors and get sewing. There are a number of websites that will inspire and offer advice on how you bring your project to life like AllFreeSewing, Pinterest and TheSewingLoft 

Mend And Repair

A small stain or a tiny tear does not mean the end of your jumpers life, it just means that it needs a little care and attention!

If you spill food on yourself, the best thing you can do immediately to stop the stain is to lick it. Yes, that might seem weird in a restaurant but our saliva has natural enzymes in it, purposely intended to break down food stuff. Make the most of it! Then when you get home, add a drop of water and give it a scrub with some Vanish soap before sticking it in the machine. Job done.

Alternatively, give it a google, there’s a wealth of information from helpful people to teach you how to get all sorts of stains out of your clothes.

PopSugar.com shows us how to easily remove a ketchup stain

We all know people that can mend clothes, you may not think you do but you do! Just ask around. Failing that there will be places that you can take your torn shirt to that will send it back as good as new. Most dry cleaners offer a professional repair service too.

There’s also a website dedicated to fixing things and covers everything from your iPhone screen to your shirt. It’s called ifixit.com. Go check it out.

Never sewn on a button before? If that’s you, I’m disappointed! It’s stupidly simple. Stuck zipper? No problem! Just get yourself on YouTube, there are thousands of videos that show you step by step how to sew on a button, mend a zip, repair a seam or add a patch.  Some of them you won’t even need a needle for.

Over to you

So, now that you’re armed with the facts and the knowledge it’s down to you and I to help make just a small difference to a big problem. If every person in the UK just recycles or repairs one item of clothing this year, that’s 65 million items of clothing that won’t go into landfill. That equates to 45,500 tonnes. That’s the weight of 91,000 cars or 6,500 fully grown elephants. Puts things into perspective right?

Also while researching things that weigh a tonne I found out that a farmer in Rhode Island once grew a pumpkin that weighed a tonne! That’s a lot of pumpkin pie. Just don’t spill it on your shirt! But if you do, at least you now know what to do about it.

Thanks for stopping by. Now stop reading and get recycling!

What I Wore Today #51

Craig of That Dapper Chap shares what he wore today in this outfit of the day post featuring a statement jacket and boots

This look is pretty much all about the jacket. In a vibrant red and blue check it really does make a statement. While this was available as a full suit (now sold out) I wanted to show you how a suit can be broken up and worn in a less formal way. Just because it comes in three pieces it doesn’t mean that it’s the only way to wear it!

Sticking with the red and blue, I chose a pair of red Chelsea boots which carry the colour story through the outfit and add additional interest.You might think that red shoes are a bit risky for a guy, but for me I think they really work with this look.

With a crisp plain white cotton shirt and blue slim fit jeans the look is clean and modern, but made more contemporary by the addition of the jacket. Finished with a navy knitted tie and silver tie bar, it’s an easy look to recreate.

Many men are afraid of wearing a statement piece like this jacket. Don’t be! The main reason guys shy away from bright colours and pattern is due to what other people may think. The reaction I get when I wear this jacket is generally “I wish I had the guts to wear a jacket like that” I hear that a lot and what is shows me is that guys, like you, want to wear something a little more daring. So, be that guy, why not?

GET THE LOOK

Red Chelsea Boots – The Sole Box – £39.99

Blue Slim Fit Jeans – Burton Menswear – £30.00

Skinny Fit White Shirt – Burton Menswear – £20.00

Navy Knitted Tie – Moss Bros – £20.00

Silver Tie Bar – Moss Bros – £15.00

Red & Blue Check Jacket (similar) – Noose & Monkey – £150.00 

You're Invited To The Party

Craig of That Dapper Chap shares a sneak peek of the latest campaign video from Burton Menswear in which he appears with stars of TV, sport and stage

Well know for it’s suiting, Burton Menswear are going all out this party season with a range of good looking suits to take you from office to party.

To show off their range they’ve created an incredible digital social campaign which includes a video created by the talented Steve Neaves who’s work includes pieces with Robert De Nero, Eddie Redmayne, Nicole Scherzinger and Nick Jonas to name just a few.

Myself, rugby star Tim Visser and fellow online influencer Carl Thompson

For the Burton #YoureInvitedToTheParty campaign they wanted a variety of guys of various ages and sizes to showcase their suiting range. So with Calum Best as the face of the brand, Scottish rugby player Tim Visser representing ‘big and tall’, Magician Tom London, blogger Carl Thompson and myself they set about putting together a really exciting visual display.


The location of the shoot was Scotch of St James, a very retro cool bar and event space in the heart of the city. With the green room in the Cavendish Hotel just around the corner, it was time to hear the plans for the day before hair and make-up. Then it was down to business with each of us being filmed in our new suits.

Tim Visser gets ready for his shoot

Burton footwear, a pair for every dapper gent

Tom London keeps us entertained with magic in the green room

I have no idea what I’m pointing at!

Carl Thompson chilling in the green room

Heading to the location in my blue Burton three piece suit, I didn’t feel as nervous as you might think and I did my piece with little direction. Fingers crossed it looked okay! But none of us will know just how well we did until the campaign is launched this Thursday (10th November)

A behind the scenes shot from the Burton party wear campaign

The final scene involved all five of us, with Tom doing some amazing magic which needs to be seen to be believed, and still has me asking “how” even now.

So, look out for the video very soon. I’ll of course share it on my own social media channels and here on the blog but with it being shown on video screens in store and blasted across Burton’s own channels it’s going to be hard to miss!

Strutting my stuff in my Burton three piece suit

GET THE LOOKS

So, You’re Invited To The Party! What will you wear? 

MR BEST (Aka: The Face)

Calum best, dressed to impress

Like Calums textured suit? click the link below to check it out

Super suave. Find Mr Bests super smart tux look HERE

MR THOMPSON (Aka: The Influence)

Online influencer Carl looking sharp in his burgundy roll neck

Contemporary styling from Carl Thompson

Mr Thompson cuts a dash in his roll neck sweater worn under his navy Burton suit. Check it out HERE

MR VISSER (Aka: The Big Guy)

Tim Visser in blue suit and camel roll neck

If you like Tim’s look click the link below to find out more

Fine Mr Visser’s contemporary party look HERE

MR LONDON (Aka: The  Magic)

Tom London looks magic in his tux

Check out Toms look by clicking the link below

Click HERE to find out more about Mr London’s purple jacquard jacket

MR HAMMOND (Aka: The Style)

You don’t need a tie to look dapper

My look: A three piece suit and a crisp white shirt

Check out my three piece suit and pin collar shirt HERE

As soon as the campaign goes live I’ll share more with you, but until then it’s pretty top secret! So, why not check out the Burton range in the meantime and get yourself suited and booted for the party season!

Thanks for taking time out to read my post and thank you to the Burton team, Calum Best, Tim Visser, Tom London and Carl Thompson for a great day and a fantastic experience!