A covetable aesthetic best described as ‘tomgirl,’ Byron-based creative, Karissa Sparke, inspires a lifestyle of responsible consumerism. Here, she shares her tips on shopping more sustainability and how you can get the most out of the pieces in your wardrobe.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE CONSCIOUS CONSUMERISM?
To me conscious consumerism is about accepting that yes, we are going to buy things, but that we have choice and power in where and how we choose to spend our money. To shop with intention, support your values, buying less and buying well.
WHAT IS THE MOST CHALLENGING PART ABOUT BUILDING A SUSTAINABLE WARDROBE?
Sometimes it’s really hard to say no to ‘trends.’ We are so bombarded with the new
that it’s really hard to step back and think about what you need, or even whether you really
love something or if it’s just something you’ve seen everywhere. That’s why I think it’s important to take a bit of time before buying a new piece. See if it sticks with you or if you forget about it pretty quickly.
WHEN IT COMES TO CURATING A SUSTAINABLE WARDROBE, WHAT FACTORS ARE OFTEN OVERLOOKED?
I think when people begin this journey, it can feel really overwhelming, but one of my personal mottos is progress not perfection. The fashion industry has a long way to go in terms of its sustainability journey – but change is happening.
When curating a sustainable wardrobe, it tends to mean you end up with less ‘statement’ pieces because you end up looking more for things you can wear again and again, and style in different ways. It doesn’t mean you can’t have that element of ‘fun’ in your wardrobe – accessories are where I personally choose to play.
WHAT ARE 3 SIMPLE CHANGES PEOPLE CAN MAKE FOR A MORE SUSTAINABLE WARDROBE?1.
First things first, take care of the clothes you already own. I was guilty of never following care instructions, and now I’m pretty religious with it. Yes, clothes aren’t designed to last forever, but we can make them last as long as possible. Even if we decide to donate that piece to an op-shop one day, it will be in good condition for its next life.2.
Turn all your hangers in the wrong direction. When you wear something, turn it around to face the right direction. After some time, you’ll have a really good idea of the things you wear over and over again, and pieces you don’t. Then when you do buy something new, you will know whether it’s going to be worth it for you.3.
Every time you are thinking of buying something new – try and think of at least three outfits/ways you can style it with things you already own.
BEST PIECE OF ADVICE FOR SOMEONE WANTING TO LIGHTEN THEIR ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT?
Not fashion related, but basically one of the best things you can do as an individual to have a significant reduction in your environmental impact is to reduce your intake of animal products. Again, progress not perfection, maybe try going vego 1-2 times a week.
CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE PIECES YOU CHOSE AND WHY?
This linen suit is pure heaven. The light green colour is still neutral enough that it feels really classic and wearable. I loved creating looks around how I would style for work, casual and a dressier occasion. The white t-shirt is also a really nice heavier fabric. It feels light and breezy but has a lovely knitted texture. In trying to curate a timeless wardrobe, I’m obsessed with my basics and have come to realise how far different textures go in mixing up an outfit.