4 Days until Dressember! The high cost of fast fashion and Ethical Alternatives

by Melissa West on November 27, 2017

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4 Days until Dressember

With only four days until Dressember I joined my friend, fellow Dressember team member, Sherry Scheideman (and clinical counselor here in Victoria BC) and we headed to Ola Dubois pop up shop.

My husband, Timothy West was the photographer for the event.

Dani from Ola Dubois www.oladubois.ca combines her passion for vintage style, thrifting, fashion, creativity and a desire to make a positive impact on the environment with her dresses.

She makes dresses out of reclaimed fabrics and sustainable fabrics. Her dresses are upcycled and one of a kind.

Whenever I am on camera I feel like I have a difficult time articulating the horrors of fast fashion. Hopefully I can do it a little more justice here.

Our cheap clothes come at a cost to the other human beings that are being enslaved to produce them.

The children that are producing your clothing are not given time to drink water or go to the washroom.

Families are lured into sending their children to garment factories with promises of food, shelter and fair wages and their children are met with horrible working conditions, long hours and no time off.

Your cheap clothes mean horrific work conditions, including unsafe buildings, buildings that literally collapse and are frequently destroyed by fires with the workers in them.

If you watch this video, you will see one 18 year old woman who miraculously survived after being buried in the rubble of the April 24, 2013 Rana Plaza factory in Banglades collapse for 17 days.

She was lucky, the Rana Plaza factory collapse of April 2013 claimed 1, 100 lives.

Fast fashion has taken us from two seasons to four seasons to releasing new clothes every week. One research study showed that simply doubling the wages of sweatshop workers would only cost the end consumer 1.5% more per item.

The international labour organization estimates that 250 million children between the ages of 5-14 are forced to work in sweatshops in developing countries with 120 million of these working full time.

You can make a difference:

1. Join Our Team

We would love to have you join our team and wear a dress everyday in December to raise awareness and stop human trafficking.


2. Make a Donation

Our team is offering incredible prizes for those who support us through donations.

Sandrine is giving: https://support.dressemberfoundation.org/fundraiser/sandrine-thinnes

5 USD – a big heartfelt virtual or real hug depending if we are to meet
10 to 20 USD – You get a painted and handwritten postcard by me
20 to 50 USD – You get a mixed media painting by me
50 to 100 USD – You get a knitted/crocheted hat or cowl/scarf (or a skein of handspun wool if you like to knit/crochet yourself)
100 to 250 USD – You are awesome, I love you, you get socks!
250 USD – You are beyond, you get a knitted top or sweater!

Peige is giving: https://support.dressemberfoundation.org/fundraiser/peige-rosales

5 USD/Euros — A HUGE, smiley hug from me, in person or on the virtual platform of your choice;
10-20 USD/Euros — A photograph me holding a sign thanking you, from one of the many beautiful locations here in Italy;
50-100 USD/Euros — A custom-made 10-15 minute yoga routine for either morning or evening;
100-250 USD/Euros — An afternoon of my time donated to you to do yoga, work on your pet project, etc.;
250+ USD/Euros — A delicious vegetarian dinner, cooked by me and delivered to your door, or the ingredients for a yummy Italian pasta supper mailed to you!

Jos One is giving: https://support.dressemberfoundation.org/fundraiser/jos-one

I will bake cookies for anyone who makes a donation over $20.
Over $100 and I’ll make you dinner.

Here are my prizes for this year 🙂

10 to 20 USD – A photo of me holding a sign thank you from one of the many beautiful places here in Victoria BC
20-50 USD – A video of me thanking you and reading you a poem
50 to 100 US A customized 5-day plan of yoga classes based on my existing classes on a topic of your choice.
100 to 250 USD A customized 90 minute Yin Yoga Practice to meet your personal needs with Yin Pose text, images and poem.
250 + USD 2 customized 90 minute Yin Yoga Practices to meet your personal needs, with Yin yoga poses in text, images and a poem. These 2 classes would be for opposing seasons, so you would have one for winter and one for summer. 🙂

3. Be an informed consumer

Please take the time to watch this video and be an informed consumer:

Sweatshop – Deadly Fashion (the documentary)

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