Day 9: Putting Value Back Into Our Clothes

Outfit Look: Day 9

I'm just about finished with the book Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion by Elizabeth L. Cline 

It is an absolute must read. 

A recent highlight in this book that stuck with me was this:

"Americans are so convinced that cheap fashion deals are fair that we often view with suspicion designers who make a well-made product that isn't cheap."

This is so true. We have devalued not only our clothing, but even the goods that we consume as well. If I tell someone what I spent on my hemp, organic cotton dress from Prairie Underground (which was $115 dollars) most people would tell me I'm crazy and how they could never spend that much on a dress for just everyday use. 

But when I think back to my fast fashion days where I bought something new almost every week from stores like H&M, Forever21, and Target, I can tell you I have none of those clothes now, I have spent double or even triple of what this one dress cost. And I have nothing to show for all those purchases I made.

Each time I'd walk buy one of those fast fashion stores I'd be lured in by the bright lights of cheap deals and the latest trend. Each $5 blouse, $15 jacket, $2 dollar accessory, $8 dollar t-shirt (that unraveled after a few washes years) was a trap. I repurchased and repurchased over and over again. These clothes where never worth my dollar. I assumed that these types of cheap clothing was my only choice. It was my only choice because I didn't have enough money to buy a nice dress that was made with quality, of good fabrics, and of people who were payed fairly for their craft. 

But the truth is, I spent hundreds of dollars more than if I had just saved, blocked out the noise of trends, and put my dollar to real use. What if I had given real value to my hard earned money? I would have a smaller wardrobe of pieces that carried me through season after season and year after year. 

My black linen dress has been worn for nine days in a row now and I couldn't love it more. I have ownership of this dress. I love how it was made, who made it, and I love that I know own something that is going to be part of my wardrobe for way longer than any other piece of cheap clothing I've ever owned. I value this dress.