What a pleasant surprise to read on @Vogue online that #Vetements is taking over four windows @Harrods to raise awareness about corporate overproduction which Vetements’ CEO, co-founder and LCF alumni, #GuramGvasalia says is destroying #fashion and the world. He argues, as psychology.fashion has for some time, that people are trying to tackle sustainability from the wrong perspective.
Gvasalia picks up on the #psychology underlying successfully getting the message across. He points out how technology-enabled fast attention switching has resulted in shrinking attention spans so communication needs to be repeated and sustained In the next year, Gvasalia plans 50 events worldwide. The first is @Harrods where windows have been filled with clothing donated by 4000 Harrods employees and Parisian charity donation bins. In addition, during February, #Harrods’ customers can donate their own garments with the proceeds going to @NSPPC. Gvasalia invited fashion brands to participate, but “nobody wanted to take part … Everyone is afraid of admitting that they make more clothes than they can sell.” He points out how luxury brands are forced to make huge price reductions on their overproduced stock and when they don’t sell, they can end up in landfill.
We all need to take action. According to Gvasalia “Brands need to make their supply meet their demand and consumers need to think, ‘Do I need all these clothes?’”
But would thinking about whether we need all these clothes enough to change behaviour? It would be easy to reason that we do! Like brands, we don’t want to admit we buy more than we can (or even want to) wear. Researchers have found that 80% of what we have in our wardrobe is unworn.
It’s time to apply psychology and adopt a structured approach to changing behaviour so that brands and consumers can appreciate how they as well as the planet can benefit from buying less, buying quality and buying long term.