I interrupt our forecast programming, and scheduled ramblings about my convertible collection to invite you on an adventure with me.
So a little while ago I was watching ‘The Good Place’, which is a marginally entertaining Netflix series starring Kristen Bell. Trying really hard here not to give away important plot points, but, there’s this bit when they discover that no humans are going to the Good Place (The abode of the blessed/Valhalla/Olympus/Kingdom of Heaven, or whatever other fabulous name you and your belief system may have for post mortem bliss) not even the one dude that accidentally correctly theorized how the filing system for human souls worked, during a spring break bender. You see, no matter how helpful, selfless, charitable, considerate or forgiving you are as you perform your way through life, the backdrop to our interactions is just a huge mess of moral free discrepancies that generates harm. I get that this is a comedy, and I promise that I laughed, but also, Wow. I love it when a thing makes my head spin a little bit.
Look at it this way; what if someone was keeping score? What if God was a gender neutral, all powerful counter of the moral abacus in the sky? What if we are literally held responsible for the damage of every action we engage in? How many points would you lose with one fast fashion t-shirt, or an apple whose origins are not your own organic back garden? Literally everything we do now has a messy immorality attached to it at some point, what if the mess was so murky that even Mother Teresa couldn’t even make it to the Good Place? It makes perfect sense to me.
After briefly checking the WWW for Good Place Cults, I can confirm that I will not be joining any dodgy commune to grow my own tomatoes, but maybe I can offer something to the bigger picture, rather than purely looking to create fashion that is better for the environment.
You know I love fashion, right? Every time I buy something I feel bad, like, Super Bad (and not in a cool 80’s way). You know, I try to buy vintage, donated, made myself, and I try to do the right thing, but I am raising kids, am a tired University student, and I am not exactly rolling in cash, so honestly, I can’t do it all. Neither can you, and no one would expect you to. We literally do not have the time, local resources or skill sets to make all our actions morally positive, so we have to trust global corporations to make all our consumer decisions for us, and we all know what that’s going to look like. If you aren’t sure you could start by watching Stacey Dooley’s BBC 3 documentary ‘Fashion’s dirty secrets’, and that is just the very tip of a filthy iceberg.
In the immortal words of the doors, ‘the time to hesitate is through’.
I have an idea!
What if we create a community of people that would rent, rather than buy clothes? What if we could rent designer vintage fashion and support local artisanal creators, ethical designers, and fabulous innovative fashion by renting their products, rather than just buying stuff, and passing it on when we’re bored.
How about we accept that as humans we are limited and suffer with strong boredom reflexes (I’m talking about me), the ones that make you want something new, as soon as the buzz for the last thing subsides, 30 minutes into wearing it (again, me)? What if we build a beautiful webstore to fulfil your natural consumer urges, but transform the usual WANT – WEAR – WASTE paradigm of our fashion spending into a WANT – WEAR – SHARE dynamic?
Imagine, next time you have a fancy family do, you find the perfect dress, then buy the shoes and bag to match, possibly even a hat, if it’s winter at the least you need a cover-up too. You look awesome, you get the compliments, everyone loves this look on you, they’ve never seen it before and you’re super pleased that there’s no one else in your outfit. Following the glowing premier, what happens to that outfit? Back of the wardrobe gathering dust? Honestly, because you can’t wear the same dress twice, right?
How about you have access to limited collections, of beautiful sustainable clothes, or small design companies that manufacture in the UK, some even knit in their front room while they are watching East Enders? How about you can borrow 4 pieces a month, take care of them, and return them at the end of the month to replace with new things? How about your entire fancy outfit costing you a monthly subscription and not a few hundred wasted pounds?
I think it sounds like a bit of an adventure, and I am creating a map, I’m putting together a few experiments to help make this concept a reality, and I’m looking for volunteer customers. I know that this entire blog was constructed with questions, but I have just one more….Will you join me? If you’re a female (sorry males, I need to focus my efforts in this investigation, I still love you all though, and feel free to message me your thoughts), please help forward my research by visiting the following link and completing my survey.
Let’s earn ourselves a spot in Paradise for when we end up 6 feet under! *
*The author of this post wishes to make it clear that this is not a sales promise, it’s a joke. There are no heavenly golden tickets here, just some crazy theology and a mad woman with a plan.