With fashion weeks in full swing, we’re seeing a number of new and creative innovations hitting the catwalk. Soon enough, we’ll be able to buy iterations of these creations on the high street this spring. However, as noted in a recent Guardian article, rigid fashion calendars may be encouraging overconsumption and rampant waste. For instance, even though the weather might still feel like winter, retailers will begin rolling out spring lines in February. Would you wear light, airy clothes when it’s still snowing outside? Unfortunately, weather fluctuations can lead to drops in sales and excess stock. And with excess stock being continually marked down, consumers will simply wait for these sales to buy more for less.
Fashion pundits posit that by doing away with the seasonal cycle, waste levels would drop and businesses would reap the monetary benefits. Would retailers and designers be ready to adopt such a drastic shift?
As it stands, businesses are instead opting for incremental changes. Fashion retailers are aware of overconsumption and are tackling the issue by promoting in-store recycling zones or encouraging customers to buy less (as Patagonia so famously did a few years ago). While not necessarily a drastic turn, it’s a step in the right direction.