Celebrate Earth Day with Albany and Avers

Celebrate Earth Day with Albany and Avers

Traditionally, resolutions are made on New Year’s Eve, but this Earth Day, Albany and Aver’s is challenging you to slow fast-fashion and shop more sustainably. You may have heard it's good for the planet to shop pre-loved, second-hand, or vintage, but why? Break out your bluelight glasses, and stay tuned for some glaringly obvious evidence, revealing how the fashion industry truly affects our beloved planet Earth. 

Roughly half of all textiles produced come from cotton. Let’s rewind to grade-school economics. Our planet has renewable resources, and we have non-renewable resources. For today’s first question on Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader, is cotton a renewable resource or a non-renewable resource? If you answered “renewable,” you are correct. However, cotton production methods are incredibly unstable, and soon the industry won’t be able to maintain them. 

How is cotton production unstable? Well, over 20,000 liters of water are needed to produce enough cotton to create one outfit. For context, your new Midnights album tee and favorite pair of distressed denim—yes, only two pieces of clothing—require over 5280 gallons of water to produce. Those of you who are smarter than a fifth grader are surely thinking, “Well, water is also a renewable resource,” and Jeff Foxworthy would tell you “That’s correct!” 

Here’s what is not renewable: the endless amount of soil systems, rivers, lakes, wetlands, ecosystems, and underground aquifers that are contaminated and degraded by pesticides, fertilizers, and toxins flowing from cotton production. That, my friends, is the farthest thing from sustainable or ethical, as this runoff leaves everything it encounters in ruins. 

When you buy fast-fashion, you keep these unethical practices in motion. Consider the environmental impact of what it takes to make that one outfit you’ve had in your cart, and then consider how many times you’ll actually wear it. Statistics say, the average person only wears an item seven times before they discard it. So ask yourself: does wearing one trendy outfit for a week warrant contaminating 20,000 liters of water and all the ecosystems in the path of the runoff? I think the fifth graders would say no.

Until the fast-fashion industry takes a good, hard look at their production methods, buying vintage or second-hand is the most sustainable way to feed your shopping addiction. You get your retail therapy, and meanwhile, you’re likely investing your money in a local business within your community, rather than some multi-million dollar franchise paying unlivable wages. 

Albany and Aver’s is the perfect place to start practicing conscious consumerism, and there are so, so many vintage and secondhand shops all over the Omaha metropolitan area to add to your list of ethical-fashion vendors. 

This Earth Day, on April 22nd from 11:00-5:00 pm, Albany and Avers will be giving away free plant cuttings with purchases of $40 or more. We’re hoping for a beautiful, sunny, Dundee-day! Walk on over, let your hair get tustled in that relentless Nebraska wind, and spend your Earth Day in our fitting room—admiring how great you look in sustainable fashion.

P.S. for all my fellow romanticswith the proper care, that little cutting will take root, start to grow, and inevitably thrive as time goes on. If I were you, whenever I prune or water that healthy little guy, I would let his growth remind me that my personal resolution to quit fast-fashion is helping heal the planet, one garment at a time.

Written by Emma Gardner 

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