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As the focus on sustainability in the fashion sphere grows, the luxury sector also evolves. While there is still a demand for high-end pieces, shoppers are now examining their purchases through an environmental scope. How can we shop ethically to ensure the wellbeing of our planet for generations to come? Eco-conscious shoppers are looking to the past when looking at the future of fashion. The vintage and the pre-owned sector continues to grow as consumers buying and selling pre-owned luxury items play a part in the fight towards sustainable fashion. Both habits promote an extended lifecycle for garments, limiting waste.
While shopping upscale vintage and re-sale are not the only ways for eco-focused consumers to shop, they are one way that people can make a positive impact. According to an article published by the New York Times published on 12/18/2018, fashion is responsible for eight percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. When talking about sustainability, the life cycle of a garment is also important, as pieces that get tossed after the original owner is done wearing them create more waste. Certain materials, like polyester and nylon, can also be deemed unethical as their production methods emit carbon dioxide, a leading cause of climate change.
Shopping vintage also has another perk, and that has all to do with the exclusivity that today’s consumers appreciate. There’s more distinctiveness in shopping vintage, so you won’t show up to a special event wearing the same outfit or accessory as the person across the room. Purchasing vintage leather goods and fine jewelry is often considered a wise investment, as these items often appreciate or hold their financial value.
The world’s fashion elite have always had a love for vintage fashion and find enjoyment in the thrill of the hunt for exclusive pieces. Below, we give you some of our favorite vintage and resale online destinations. If you’re loving the 1980s fashion resurgence, why not shop items straight from the decade?
This e-commerce site is the brainchild of sisters Elisa Whang and Emily Berkel, who created Le Prix as they wished their favorite consignment boutiques were accessible online. Le Prix’s network includes over 600 vintage and resale boutiques- making it possible for fashionistas to shop their favorite consignment shops from around the globe right online. All featured items are put through an extensive verification process to ensure authenticity. Experts meticulously inspect pieces—carefully examining things like stitching, font logos, zippers, interiors, and serial codes—before they can be offered on the site. Le Prix offers an impressive array of luxury handbags, including brands like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Hermès (and even a few of the coveted Birkin bags).
Launched in Paris in 2009, Vestiaire Collective now boasts more than 9 million members worldwide. Vestiaire Collective thrives on a circular economy, where engaged members buy and sell to one other. This large community is responsible for the high number of items submitted weekly. The circular fashion economy concept aims to decrease waste while increasing the life cycle of garments. This year, Vestiaire Collective celebrated its 10th anniversary by launching its first permanent boutique at Selfridges, a famous high-end department store in London, United Kingdom. The site has plenty to peruse through and is ideal for finding those pieces from past collections that you still regret not buying.
Archive Vintage was founded in 2006 by Kerry Bonnell, a stylist with a passion for fashion design and vintage. Archive Vintage goes one step further in their hunt for ethical consumerism and doesn’t sell fur. Fur production is known to be harmful to the environment because of its energy consumption and also to humans—both the consumers wearing the items and those working in factories where these garments are made—due to the toxic chemicals used in their creation. Aside from their thriving online presence, Archive Vintage has two boutiques in the United States in Dallas and New York City. Their curated selection of vintage pieces makes the site a standout in the world of consignment. ■