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Vanish partners with the British Fashion Council to highlight throwaway fashion

By Danielle Wightman-Stone

Feb 23, 2021

Garment care brand Vanish has unveiled a Rewear Edit high-fashion shoot in partnership with the British Fashion Council as part of London Fashion Week made entirely from discarded clothing to raise awareness of the 3.5 tonnes of clothing thrown away every five minutes in the UK.

The thought-provoking imagery is shared alongside new research commissioned by Vanish that shows throwaway attitudes towards fashion, with 64 percent of consumers admitting to wearing an item of clothing just once and 50 percent owning an item they have never worn. Resulting in up to 350,000 tonnes of clothing being sent to landfill each year.

When asked what they’ve done with their unwanted clothes, nearly a third (31 percent) admitted to disposing of items at a clothes bank or throwing them in the bin (16 percent), rather than considering more sustainable routes such as rewearing or sharing with friends and family.

Reasons for consumers disposing of clothes include minor issues such as faded colours (22 percent), stains (20 percent), or minor damage (19 percent), according to the research by OnePoll on behalf of Vanish amongst 1,000 consumers.

Additionally, nearly a quarter (23 percent) of consumers confess to discarding or never wearing an item of clothing again as they got bored of it, revealing “a shockingly casual and mindset towards their wardrobe,” added Vanish.

The research also revealed more than a third (34 percent) of people admitted to buying clothes in the spur of the moment, only to change their mind later. While many consumers admit to being unaware of the effect of this behaviour, placing clothing fourth after housing, transport and food items in terms of presumed impact on the environment.

Vanish research reveals that 64 percent of consumers wear an item of clothing just once

With the help of fashion stylist and sustainability advocate, Miranda Almond, Vanish has created a film and series of images to demonstrate how clothing can be re-worn, reused and restyled to create new looks. These styles it adds could be found in any wardrobe by using simple adjustments and styling tricks to breathe new life into unloved clothes that have barely been worn.

The imagery features everything from classic black dresses, tailoring, chunky knitwear and conceptual denim to encourage everyday consumers to embrace more sustainable ways to care for their clothes, as single-use clothing costs the UK consumer 2.7 billion pounds each year.

Cigdem Kurtulus, chief marketing and digital officer for RB UK and Ireland, which owns Vanish, said in a statement: “What we wear allows us to really express ourselves and our identities. Here at Vanish, we know just how important the right clothes are. We launched the Rewear Edit to demonstrate the sheer potential that sits in items that we throw out without a second thought. We want to encourage the nation to look at their wardrobe in a new light.”

Caroline Rush, chief executive officer of the British Fashion Council, added: “As the world turns its attention to the incredible collections at this year’s London Fashion Week, our partnership with Vanish is here to remind people of the joy of restyling and reimagining their wardrobes and to give their clothes the lifespan they deserve. We are dedicated to working with Vanish to explore positive consumption for a more sustainable world.”

Vanish is a founding partner of the Institute of Positive Fashion, the British Fashion Council’s recently formed initiative, which aims to help the British fashion industry become more resilient and circular through collaboration and action. The garment care brand is also an official partner of London Fashion Week and is undertaking research to support consumer education to establish sustainable fashion behaviours such as wearing clothes for longer, buying pre-loved garments, and re-purposing and recycling clothes in our wardrobes.

Images: courtesy of Vanish by Marco Mori