Since posting Tales of a Fit Model last week and reading a few books which I’ll tell you about soon, I’ve been thinking a lot about how clothes are made. From design to fitting to getting the supply chain together, there is *so* much effort put into it — far more than most of us realize. And yet the result still falls so far short of where many of us wish it were in terms of quality, fit, and sustainability.
And it’s not just the fashion industry — ALL of the industries have these problems. Big, clunky, and slow to change, they are also governed by an outdated paradigm that wants to churn through and sell as much stuff as possible … that has little incentive to create items of high quality … that puts scant thought into what will happen to all that churning stuff when no one wants it anymore. (I’ll tell you: Pacific Garbage Patch.)
We realize that this has to change. But the industrial paradigm is a hard act to follow! For all its problems, it has made our everyday lives soooo much better — who wants to go back to a pre-Target existence?
Mass production has allowed more people than ever before to experience material prosperity and economic opportunity. But, clearly, we can’t continue on our current path — it won’t work within our current constraints (i.e., just the one planet).
So we have to find a new way to do prosperity that is so ridiculously superior that the old dirty paradigm bows its head cause it knows that it’s been beat.
Where everything is radically, next generation-style better.
Where the coffeemaker you bought 10 years ago still makes rockin’ good coffee with no signs of stopping.
And everything in your closet fits you beautifully because it was made specifically for you, and everything’s comfy and holds up and makes you happy when you put it on. Every single item!
And you never see a TV in a dump, because when your TV gets old it is replaced by your TV service, who also takes the old one away and recycles it into newer, shinier TVs. Same with carpets, computers, and cars. Zero waste.
And anywhere you go — from the mall to the hospital to your kid’s school — there is real food available, cooked by real people using real ingredients.
And cars run on electricity and weigh a quarter of what they do now, and you don’t even really need them that much because there are loads of restaurants and grocery stores in your neighborhood and the train is faster anyhow.
And, regardless of what you’re buying, you know that people are being paid fairly for their part in making it. And that it’s been thoughtfully designed for its entire lifecycle, from production to usage to recycling.
I could go on (for days!) but you probably get the idea. I believe that we can have abundance and prosperity in a way that is intelligent and beautiful and super duper bright green. It’ll take a lot of work, but what else are we doing that’s more important?
I also have to say that after years of learning and writing about how other folks are working hard to create this kind of future, I am literally jumping-up-and-down happy to be working towards it myself, in my own teeny tiny little way.
Today, dresses … tomorrow, the world! Or maybe just pants!