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How Many Clothes Do You Really Need?

“Maybe you don’t have a passion for the fashion industry. Maybe you don’t think twice about the clothes you’re wearing. But… if you care about the environment, if you care about climate change, if you care about poverty alleviation, if you care about women’s empowerment, I encourage you to look no further than the clothes you’re putting on each morning.”

As we wrap up on the end of the year, we’re ruminating over these powerful words shared by Patrick Woodyard, the Co-Founder of Nisolo. In a time of buying (for ourselves and others), we want to take a step back and reflect on the relationship we have with our clothes, and why that matters in our journey to #ChangeBeyondTextiles.

Something to chew on:

1. People spend an average of $1,700 annually on clothing; in the 1930s people would buy 9 outfits a year, and now that amount has gone up to 30.
2. Over 15 million tons of textile waste is generated in the United States every year. And nearly 13 million tons of that waste is thrown into a landfill where it’s incapable of biodegrading.

These numbers point to a resounding conclusion –

Fashion is now familiarly associated as a commodity that is easily disposable, a cheap thrill. 

It’s an association that we stand against, after all we knew that we would never be a fashion label, nor did we have the desire to be, and so we focus on making the best product possible, not the most. It is our belief that good fashion design is about being relevant to the time and place of where you are in that moment; it should be a balance between personal expression and honoring the people, skills, time, and natural elements involved in the process. When we take the time to ask where our clothes are made and by who, the process of its making, and its environmental impact – we are creating a new conversation around the relationship we have with our clothes. 

We have always been an advocate of slow fashion, designing with intentionality in process and creating quality over quantity. Sustainability, for us, is not limited with a focus on purchase. Beyond buying less and choosing better, it’s also about loving what you already have and making it last.

One of the ways to go about celebrating what you have is through a capsule closet. The idea is to build a collection made up of a few essential items of timeless clothing that can carry you through different seasons. Some people do this for a month, or three, and there are also those who go about it for a year.

We looked around and found 5 guides to get you started on your capsule closet (so you didn’t have to).

1. Should you actually start a capsule wardrobe?
2. Everything you need to know in one go.
3. 6 realistic tips for those who don’t know where to begin.
4. A head to toe sample capsule for all seasons.
5. Rotating between 47 pieces for 1 year and counting – from a male’s perspective.


Join us with the hashtag #ChangeBeyondTextiles to keep the conversation going. Every action begins from somewhere, and we want to know what you think.