This post contains gifted clothing from Baukjen and affiliate links.
As a parent, I have become acutely more aware of how much we, as society, are damaging our planet. I worry about the future of my children and wonder what the world that they live in will be like. I pray that things will stay stable enough in their lifetime, but what if they have children, and grandchildren? Whether I am lucky enough to see this future or not, it matters to me beyond belief that they are safe and happy and enjoy life in harmony with nature on this earth, that neither they nor Earth suffers.
I would like to be more pro-active about sustainability, climate change, environmental damage and recycling. Of course, as a family we recycle at home, we wash at 30, when I’m working in the office I use a re-usable coffee cup for my take away flat whites… But I know I could do more. I would like to look after our planet on a more impactful level than composting my food and switching off lights as I go.
However, until the day comes when I can invest some real time and more energy into helping the environment I will continue to do my bit, little by little. I know this isn’t good enough. I know that we are slowly killing our planet and if everyone claimed to be so short of time, we would be left with nothing. Thank heavens for Leo. It seems obvious, but it’s also frightening to think that one day (who knows when) we will probably be left with nothing if we continue the way we’re going.
Despite this understanding, I continue to be a fairly average person when it comes to preserving Earth – I do little more than be a sensible consumer and human being living in a modern world.
For me (as well as making an effort in the home and workplace to recycle and save energy) I know that my love of fashion and clothes has contributed to the mess we are leaving on our planet. It has only been in the last five or so years that I’ve started paying more attention to what – or how – I buy. I am much more of a sensible shopper, much less frivolous. I don’t make impulse purchases anymore no matter how obligated or pressured I might feel in a shop – I have learned the hard way that often a purchase made on the spot is a mistake. Now, unless I’m shopping for a wardrobe staple or replacement piece, I consider an item first – if I’m still thinking about it in a week’s time I’ll buy it, if not then it’s long forgotten anyway. I don’t want to repeat the time in my life when bags and bags and bags of on-the-spot purchases were dropped off at charity shops.
As trivial as it may sound, I am always impressed when I hear fashion brands that care for our planet by offering a service that contributes towards sustainability. That could be a dedicated line within their collections, repairs services to ensure garments last longer, or recycling initiatives such as the one provided by maternity brand Isabella Oliver.
It’s estimated that in today’s world, the average life of a garment is around two or three years, with maternity clothing being ever shorter. In the UK alone, it’s estimated that £140 million pounds worth of clothing ends up in landfill each year – 95% of that number could have been recycled in some way. Isabella Oliver’s Re-love, Repurpose, Recycle scheme takes old maternity clothing (from any brand) to resell in their Pre-Loved collections (where they give 50% of net proceeds to charity) or repurpose (by donating to charity), and recycle garments in a sustainable way.
When I saw the scheme advertised on Instagram by Wendy of ThankFifi (another mum who is likely all too aware of her children’s futures) I knew I wanted to help spread the word too – again, doing my little bit – so I reached out to the Isabella Oliver team to ask if I could do anything. They were delighted about the interest and offered to send some gifted pieces from their sister brand, Baukjen, which I’m wearing in these images shot on a family day at Craigtoun Country Park.
You might think that offering me ‘free’ clothing is a contradiction to the message of reducing fashion waste. I think you would be right, if Baukjen was a brand that was low on quality and fast on fashion. Sure, they have new season collections (who doesn’t?) but there isn’t a sense of fast fashion, of churning out cheap clothes that will be worn once and sent to those disgusting landfills. Rather, the higher price point and incredibly good quality fabrics and designs mean that Baujken is exactly the kind of brand to look at when shopping for fashionable pieces that are made well and long lasting, and that you will enjoy wearing. I felt so good in these clothes – stylish but was so comfortable – that I am desperate to wear them again. Getting rid of them for something new is the last thing on my mind because I could feel good, look good, but still chase after a toddler and lift a big baby without fear of ruining my clothes. The fit on these Gail jeans is superb – they’re light and comfortable but somehow they fit like a glove (they’re snug around my bottom without the dreaded gape at the waist). If you can, these are jeans to buy in every colour.
So, as I type this blog post I am gearing up to part with my maternity clothes. I would absolutely love to have more babies but I’ll be honest, two is an entirely different ball game. I adore them both, with my entire being, but let me tell you that my health, my marriage, my work, and my friendships have never been under so much pressure. For now, the decision is to stick with our two gorgeous children – so clearing out the maternity clothes and packing them off to Isabella Oliver is my way of helping our planet for their future until I can dedicate more time to the cause.
T-shirt, Baukjen (gifted) – currently 15% off with code SHARE15, and possibly another 15% off when you sign up
Gail jeans, Baukjen (gifted) – size down, they come up large – currently 15% off with code SHARE15, and possibly another 15% off when you sign up
Sunglasses, New Look
Bag, from a souk in Marrakech
Images: Kris Miller
Location: Craigtoun Country Park
Find out more about Isabella Oliver’s Re-love, Repurpose, Recycle scheme.