The rise of sustainable fashion during the pandemic

In recent months, many people have made a conscious effort to shop more sustainably, swapping out high street stores for charity and vintage shops, greatly benefitting both the environment and pocket.

What was once considered undesirable, is now the new way of finding unique hidden gems allowing others to stand out from the crowd and let their clothes do the talking.

Eager to understand how this gradual change occurred and what sparked this movement, Limerick Voice reporter Saoirse Hammond spoke to two U.L. students who have profited from this phenomenon.

Whack Vintage:

University of Limerick students and owners of Whack Vintage Cian Cunningham (22) from Drogheda and Oisin Fahy (22) from Nenagh, tell how the COVID 19 pandemic was the making of their business.

Mr. Fahy and Mr. Cunningham are both in their fourth year of sports science in U.L. and have a shared passion for both sports and vintage clothing.

Speaking about why they set up the business, Mr. Fahy said “it all stemmed from the idea of being individual and having something someone else doesn’t, while also not doing any harm to the environment.”

“We used to organise our drops for the same days as the PUP (pandemic unemployment payment) and as a result of this and more people being on their phones, our sales skyrocketed.”

Vintage stores and sustainable shopping have become more popular than ever in the last year, largely as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic.

A study done by IBM in 2020 showed that 60% of people wanted to shop more sustainably but felt they didn’t have the time or knowledge to do so. 

However, the pandemic left majority of us with an abundance of spare time which a lot of people used wisely.

Many people educated themselves on the terrible impact fast fashion has on our environment and even made time to clear out their own wardrobe.

The proof is in the pudding as the last 18 months have seen an enormous increase of 163% in the number of users of the online second-hand clothing shop,  Depop. 

Make sure to check out their Instagram @whackvintage and if you haven’t already, make the effort to shop more sustainably.

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