Slow Fashion: What It Is and Why You Should Care

In a world where fast fashion dominates mainstream shopping habits, and trends seem to change faster than the seasons, there's a quiet but powerful revolution happening in the world of clothing and style. It's called Slow Fashion, and it's more than just a trend; it's a movement that's changing the way we think about what we wear and how we consume.

What is Slow Fashion?

Slow Fashion is a term that represents an alternative to the fast-paced, mass-produced, and often unsustainable approach of the fashion industry. At its core, Slow Fashion is about producing clothing in a way that considers the ethical, environmental, and social impacts of fashion. It encourages conscious consumer choices and emphasises quality, durability, and timeless style over fleeting trends.

Illustration by Elizabeth Joy

One of the pivotal organisations at the forefront of this movement is Fashion Revolution - we would highly recommend checking out their website. Fashion Revolution's mission is to ensure that the fashion industry values people, the environment, and creativity in equal measure. They promote transparency and ethical practices in the fashion supply chain, advocating for fair wages, safe working conditions, and sustainable manufacturing processes.

We at Rock Paper Scissors love fashion and beautiful design. But we don’t want our clothes and homeware to exploit people or destroy our planet. We stand by the Fashion Revolution and demand radical, revolutionary change.

Reasons we believe that Slow Fashion is important in today's fashion landscape:

Sustainability: Fast fashion has significant environmental repercussions, from excessive water usage to the landfill mountains of textile waste it generates. Slow Fashion prioritises sustainability by promoting eco-friendly materials, ethical manufacturing, and the principle of buying less but investing in better quality.

At Rock Paper Scissors for example, ZiBag makes a reusable shopping bag from textile waste- reclaiming fabric offcuts from the parachute manufacturing process.

Ethical Practices: Many fast fashion brands have faced controversies related to unethical labour practices, from low wages to unsafe working conditions. Slow Fashion advocates for fair treatment of workers and ensures that those involved in the supply chain are compensated fairly for their labour.

In our in-store studio for example, we work hard when we’re making but our standards are not unreasonable. We work decent hours in a comfortable environment and take breaks to pat a dog or sip tea. Nobody is harmed in the production of your plush toy.


Quality Over Quantity: In the era of fast fashion, many consumers have closets full of clothing they rarely wear. Slow Fashion encourages us to buy fewer, high-quality items that are timeless and durable, reducing the cycle of consumption and waste.

Do you really need 5 bikinis? (The answer is no). Choose one you really love that is made to last- like this gorgeous Kogelberg- inspired bikini from Gabrielle Swim made from recycled plastic bottles. (Come and try it on in store).

Transparency: Slow Fashion brands are more transparent about their production processes, allowing consumers to make informed choices. This transparency builds trust and promotes accountability within the fashion industry.

Usually, if brands aren’t transparent about their practices that’s a red flag. We at Rock Paper Scissors know all our brands personally, and know that they would proudly discuss their supply chain. They have no dark secrets to hide.

Individual Expression: Slow Fashion empowers individual style and self-expression. It encourages consumers to value unique, well-crafted pieces that reflect their personalities rather than blindly following superficial capitalist trends dictated by the industry.

We believe in having fun with your personal style. Rock that funky bucket hat because you like it.


Supporting Local Communities: By choosing Slow Fashion brands, you often support local artisans and communities, contributing to a stronger local economy and preserving traditional craftsmanship.

We love local! All our brands in Rock Paper Scissors are proudly South African. Read our blog post about why local brands deserve your attention.

Reducing Carbon Footprint: Slow Fashion typically involves locally sourced materials and reduced shipping, which can significantly lower the carbon footprint of the clothing industry.

Transporting an item across multiple continents vs a province is a significant difference in fossil fuel consumption, no? A challenge: How local can you go?

Longevity: Slow Fashion pieces are designed to last, reducing the need for frequent replacements and ultimately saving you money in the long run.


The True Cost of Fast Fashion
Watch "The True Cost" Documentary
A revealing and thought-provoking examination of the high cost of fast fashion.


In conclusion, Slow Fashion is more than a passing trend; it's a sustainable revolution in style. By supporting the Slow Fashion movement, we can foster a fashion industry that respects people, the environment, and individuality. As we navigate a world filled with disposable fashion, let's remember that our choices matter. With Slow Fashion, we can make a statement through our clothing – a statement that values quality, ethics, and sustainability over fleeting trends. So, next time you consider your fashion choices, think about the revolution happening in Slow Fashion and ask yourself: "Who made my clothes?"

Fashion Revolution at Rock Paper Scissors Shop

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