I'm here with a topic I want you gulls opinion about and that is fast fashion. What makes me wonder about most ITA Comms is that on the one hand they are very left leaning, everybody welcome kind of attitude, but don't give a fuck about working conditions or the quality of garments.Like seriously everything is bought on taobao or AliExpress. Like people complaining that high quality colthing costs so much and why don't you just buy from AliExpress is astounding. Like what ? But what's your opinion about. Do you think about the working condition? Or is it just a quality question for you ? ( I chose a ugly taobao dress as picture on purpose)
Caring about people or the planet is mostly an aesthetic for many people, something to repeat on social media so that others see them as good people. They don’t let it inconvenience them in real life.Personally I’m no paragon of righteousness but I try to mostly buy second hand and make things myself. I prefer natural fibres and quality pieces that last me a long time. The mass produced fast fashion plastic shit I see many of my comm members wear makes me itch not just because of its origins but also because it’s downright ugly and tasteless. If that makes me a snob or elitist, I don’t really care.
>>10817842Same, absolutely same.
>>10817840On one hand, Japanese lolita is not fast fashion in that people usually resell it when they no longer like it rather than donating it or throwing it away, so it gets a much longer life than say, a Forever 21 dress. But the fact is, in many ways it is similar to fast fashion in that we have no idea what the conditions of the factories are like, and it’s quite possible that they are paying no more than the factories where Taobao stuff in made. It’s not like it’s couture, being sewn by master sewists, it’s still made on an assembly line in a factory. Some brands might be made in Japan, but I’m willing to bet that most is made in China/Vietnam/Bangladesh etc. In the end, most of these people just want to posture and feel better about themselves by talking about stuff like how fast fashion is bad, but they don’t understand that buying anything from AliExpress is fast fashion. They don’t actually care. Unfortunately, it’s pretty much impossible to avoid fast fashion unless you buy everything second hand, make it yourself or are very wealthy. The best thing to do is to try to mitigate it by using clothes as long as you can, not buying into trends that pass and throwing that stuff away, and buying secondhand when possible.
Any consumptive pastime or hobby is going to be exploitative to someone, somewhere. "There is no ethical consumption under capitalism" etc etc. It can be mitigated by making your own stuff and buying secondhand, but the energy expended from shipping overseas isn't negligible to the environment. Although, unless you're one of the shopping addict-chans who buys multiple dresses a month and then immediately sells them, you're probably better off than the girls on tiktok who buy 500$ worth of SHEIN because a new micromicrotrend got started by their favorite influencer.I personally tend to buy secondhand, wear natural fibers, and not buy shitty taobao garbage. I haven't bought a main piece direct in a couple years. I'd say about 70% of what I've bought direct from brands is underpinnings and socks because, ew secondhand bloomers.
>>10817840It's a common mentality of poor people in the states. Those who have never experienced quality have no idea how to look for it, and make inferior choices in their purchasing decisions. They choose to spend "less for more", versus spending more upfront for higher quality. Thus, they cycle through loads of garbage quality garments over the years, while lolitas who spent more on main pieces have valued their wardrobe more, so have taken better care of it, and additionally resell when a garment no longer suits them - an overall victory for the lolita who has built a solid foundation for herself, and better for the environment when items can become secondhand.A lot more can be said about the advantages of natural fibers for the wearer versus manmade. Polyester, basically plastic, is not breathable and accumulates smells. Wools and cottons not only feel better, but are well equipped to regulate body temperature.Environmentally, the story is different. Producing cotton uses a ton of water (and thus, energy), so it can't be considered the gold standard. Polyesters tend to last longer in general, yet release microplastics. If you are a newlita buying numerous cotton OPs every month, you are likely producing as much fashion waste as a fast fashion victim.
Thank you all for your elaborate and thoughtful answers. It's been a long time since I've read such an intelligent internet thread and I don't mean that ironically. It's a difficult topic and I'm thankful for the perspectives you all gave me
>>10817859What do you think of the newish use of bamboo fibers?
>>10817885If you're referring to viscose, I dislike it. It tends to feel like a thin jersey, so it doesn't hold shape and shows off problem areas in an unflattering manner. In terms of environmental production, it's not that much better either.I found this article among other searches very helpful to sum up ranking fabrics in terms of environmental sustainability and good qualities to look for in fabric: https://ethicalista.com/sustainable-fabrics/
I avoid fast fashion, and I think lolita is a really good example of slow/ethical fashion with all the secondhand and handmade options. I actually felt bad buying 1 new AP dress this year because I consider it fast fashion when it wasn't always.I've also come to realize how not worth it fast fashion is in the past few years I've been avoiding it. Once or twice a year I will buy something and I pretty much always regret it. It's always some cute style but the quality is never there, it doesn't fit right, etc.In the future I'm going to continue to avoid anything made in fast fashion conditions which includes AP and taobao.
>>10817905Fast Fashion is really not worth it.That's the thing, when I started out I wa so exited about all the AliExpress links my Comm posted in the WhatsApp group ... Until I saw them wearing the items in person. That was a huge letdown. Also kind of ironic
Speaking about natural fibers, is the shop kanekoshop worth it ? They mostly use natural fibers
I'm used to wear second-hand stuff for as long as I can possibly remember, so my experience with lolita fashion feels like a continuity in that habit. I never followed fashion trends too much, so I didn't feel like I need much new items. They are a huge joke desu. Same for lolita.I think a lot of people that buy shitty clolita also buy shitty fast normie fashion. It's a consuming habit.It can change tho. A lot of newbies learn to appreciate quality when they grow older and wiser. But for that, it's important to uphold quality as a model for lolita fashion, a goal that every newbie should strive for. Unfortunately, that would be deemed elitist in the current culture.
If you want environmentally friendly fabric just keep your own alpacas, and become a wool-lita. >alpacas are very kawaii>lots of fluffy and soft wool>fully biodegradable Literally zero downsides.
If we talk about western fashion there is barely a difference anymore about high end brands and fast fashion anymore. They all with a few exceptions use more or less the same synthetic fabric blends which are prone to pilling and unrecycable. Trying to find a 100% wool coat these days is HARD (so hard in fact that I gave up after 2 years of searching and still wear the one my grandma passed on to me in 2008). When was the last time a Japanese brand used cotton fabric and cotton lining in a piece? That was back in the oldschool days as far as I remember. These days all of them use poly lining and fabrics are often a blend, so there is some decline in quality. And I am honestly shocked with the quality of some newer brand pieces. I don't think they will last 10-15 years, more like 3-4 which is still better than fast fashion, but it's getting close.
>>10817931What makes me sad is that there is no middle ground in lolita anymore. Like only extremes on both sides.
>>10817939You know what, with the current state the world is in ? Fuck yeah, just open an alpaca farm. We also don't have to worry about food, I know and love to make cheese.
>>10817943Speaking of newer brand pieces, I know because of the other thread the decline of angelic pretty but anybody knows how the newer innocent world dresses are ? I have the feeling nobody cares anymore about IW
>>10817840This is what I don't really understand: if polyester is more durable than cotton, then why does it get thrown away so much in fast fashion? Logically, shouldn't it be the other way around since natural fibers get damaged more easily? What's making all these polyester clothes unwearable after a week?
>>10817949They fall apart because of shitty and cheap construction, and really they’re designed to because the whole point of fast fashion is you get super cheap stuff you can throw away and replace with a newer trend in a month or so.
>>10817948Their quality has gotten worse as well.
>>10817943Baby, AP, Meta and IW all have used poly lining as long as I’ve worn lolita (since 2008), even when the rest of the dress is cotton. I don’t think it’s terrible to have poly lining, it’s pretty standard in most things because it’s very light without losing too much integrity due to being light, whereas cotton would be easier to rip if it was that light. I do prefer cotton for the main fabric for dresses, although blends aren’t too bad usually. It’s the poly that they use for new AP dresses that sucks because it’s too light and doesn’t hold shape well. I know Chinese girls like that for space reasons but it seems so cheap.
>>10817950Ohhh, that makes sense. So I guess these companies' mentality is, "why waste time and money on expensive fabric & skilled workers if people won't even want the product anymore next month?"It's like:>trends come and go at lightning speed>companies cut corners to keep up while still making money>the resulting clothing sucks and falls apart easily>customers buy it for cheap>throw it away after a month>new trend is introduced>repeat cycleand that's what keeps the machine running, I guess...
>>10817892>https://ethicalista.com/sustainable-fabrics/Very interesting site, ty!One other ethical issue with cotton that no one has mentioned is the claim that Uighurs in China are basically enslaved to produce it. I don't know how much of the cotton that ends up in burando comes from that source, but probably some.https://www.reuters.com/article/china-cotton-forced-labour-trfn/china-accused-of-forcing-570000-people-to-pick-cotton-in-xinjiang-idUSKBN28P2CM
>>10817968I have some older pieces using cotton lining or even silk lining. Can you imagine that?I also prefer no lining at all over poly lining. This was also common for older pieces and I personally don't mind ironing my clothes.
>>10818075What are the brands that had cotton and silk lining?
Speaking of fast fashion production
Im glad I didnt pick this up lol
>>10820084>>10820085Didn't even know this happened, how could they have possibly fucked up such a simple dress? Literally the most plain cut with a single color screen print. This looks worse than Taobao quality, I'm so disappointed.
>>10820084>>10820085Nearly 50,000 yen for this? Is Moitie serious?
>>10820101>>10820097And you see it on atepie's recent twitter post
>>10817948I have a piece from 2016 and a piece from 2000. the piece from 2016 is noticeably less thick and makes me sweat more than the older piece. Its not /bad/ quality per se, just not as nice
What the fuck happened to MMM ? I've seen better quality with taobao wtf
>>10820128Looks like they're just running on clout now and getting lazy with their products, so basically a dying brand.
>>10820130Ah shit and I was just falling in love with the brand. Shit with the new stuff getting shittier that means the old stuff gets even more expensive ugh
>>10820085>>10820104Big W for Alice Kobayashi, her own brand is superior to Moitie in terms of quality now
>>10817840I've been trying to buy from indie/small brands that hand sew their own clothes (well machine sew but not on a factory assembly line) just because I can guarantee the working conditions are better and the money is going right to the designers and seamstress. most of them also use cotton and try and avoid polyester which is a huge bonus. also a lot will take preorders so that they make an exact number of garments to avoid over ordering/having tons of wasted fabric. however finding sustainable ethically sourced fabric is so difficult. I've been thinking about making my own dresses and accessories and possibly selling some eventually and was looking at different fabric options. I'm deciding between tencel and organic cotton or using both, but when buying fabric it's nearly impossible to source if any bad chemicals were used to make it and how toxic the dye is, conditions of the farm where the raw materials were grown, etc. especially with making custom print dresses it'd have to be outsourced to a manufacturer (likely in china) so I feel like it's not possible to truly avoid all of the aspects of fast fashion but I still avoid as much of it as I can - I won't buy any new releases if the dress is made of polyester for example and don't buy from aliexpress, taobao, etc.
>>10820128>>10820130They got bought out and are running on fumes rn. They don't even have a specific lolita designer currently.
>>10820225would you be willing to name any of these brands? id love to know about them
>>10820235summer tales boutique, rebellious lamb, r r memorandum, violet fane, antique beast, and various etsy sellers (gardenhead shop is decent but some of her stuff is made with polyester, junyvette has some decent headdresses)
>>10817840Lolita is a subculture that lacks central political tenants. Some people can argue that it's feminist, countercultural, or sustainable but that's more up to how the lolita in question wants to view it. It's just a fashion.I think maybe you're drawing a parallel between people who live very cause motivated lifestyles and lolitas. Lolitas are more like normies in that they'll be performatively upset about issues of the moment, but they don't actually care enough to change their lifestyles overall. Most of them likely have some form of shopping addiction.There's a vocal group of lolitas who talk about the sustainability element, but they can't speak for everyone. Most lolitas now just want to look pretty right now on a budget. The change from having to buy brand from Japan or secondhand to getting things easily on aliexpress seems to be pushing the style towards fast fashion more and more.
>>10820084>>10820104Sorry for not knowing about construction. Is the hem where two stitched together pieces meet? Is the issue that the stitching looks weird and like it’s pulled too tight?
>>10820247I think you're right. In my experience most of the lolitas who performatively go on about sustainable fashion never actually apply that logic to themselves. They don't make considered, quality purchases with intention. Some of them even discard things the same way your stereotypical fast fashion victim would. This is because none of them actually care to shop more sustainably and mindfully. Out of the lolitas I know, most of the richer girls are shopping addicted and constantly buying a ton of dresses they don't even wear or like, only to forget about them within a few weeks. They all get really intense FOMO and can't deal with not being able to have something trendy right away. Meanwhile the poorer ones preach about how all japanese brand is hot trash and fast fashion whilst exclusively buying flavour of the month taobao prints like it makes them morally superior to 'brandwhores'. Both types brag about how they are so much better than normies who wear fast fashion or shop at regular stores.A question I have for other lolitas who are trying to shop more consciously is how do you go about dealing with FOMO? Common normie advice for shopping more mindfully is to wait when you see something you want and give yourself time to think about if you really want something. In lolita with how competitive the secondhand market is and bloodbath releases being common, this isn't really an option, you have to buy right away when you see something. If you decide to sleep on it the thing you want might already be gone. So what's your approach to dealing with this? Do you make wishlists of things to buy straight away, do you just leave it up to chance to see if it's still there after a certain amount of time, or do you just buy everything you like when you see it? If you do the latter, do you often regret your purchases and wish you would've waited? I'm curious.
>>10820084Looks like it’s from Hot Topic
>>10820256I like making little collages of wishlist items and base what I buy or search for off of those. Many pieces are kind of interchangeable because I only like a very small number of cuts and colors (basically only black and white or gobelin old school cotton at this point). So I have a list of "black velveteen OPs" or "long sleeve white cotton blouses" for example. Sometimes I do get swept up in panic buying but as I've learned to budget better I can more easily avoid it. It helps that the market has been so, so fucking dry and stale for the past couple years.
>>10820256>>10820256Kind of what the other anon said - if I'm buying something quickly I'm not panic buying - it's because I had something like it on my wish list and this item has popped up and is within a fair price point. I actually really enjoy the dreaming process when it comes to wanting something, i.e. thinking things like "if I could only have a red bag, it would tie this look together"; I'll then search the current market, and usually end up waiting for a rare appearance.
>>10820261>>10820266Ayrt, I generally do the same thing. I don't really wear prints and tend to have more vague wishlist items with a few specific dream dresses as exceptions. A lot of my comm in comparison leans sweet and print focused so theres some girls who always panic buy stuff because they can't handle having FOMO. Then they sell it as soon as they get it, while simultaneously preaching about how they are so much better than normie fast fashion consumers even though they basically treat lolita like fast fashion and put no thought into what they buy. I don't like to pass too much judgement because I'm not perfect myself, but it's hard not to notice the hypocrisy sometimes.
>>10820278The idea of buying a bunch of dresses and then immediately selling them stresses me out, lol. I know lolita isn't couture prices or anything but that's still a good bit of money to drop on a dopamine hit. Even when I was into AP sweet I was still picky about what prints to buy.
>>10820293same. selling is a pain and I've never managed to make back any extra money on sales (after SS fees, shipping etc), usually I don't even break even. I wear classic and I like to bargain hunt so I end up with a lot of solids or not very popular prints, so there's not a lot of demand, but still. It's much cheaper for you, and better for the environment, to think twice before buying instead having to ship the item out again, use packaging materials, etc. There's a reason reduce comes first in "reduce reuse recycle" but it's hard for people to remember that in a hobby that's based around collecting clothes.
>>10817840If anything I do think it's impacting how brands manufacturer their products now. Im using AP as a jumping off point but with each passing year their quality control has been the fucking pits. With taobao making affordable and accessible garments I feel like brands are mistaking this for trends that people are wanting to see out of them instead of the bigger picture. Which is why I think a lot of their stuff is comparable to some of the cheap dresses out here and they still expect people to pay the big price tag for it.
>>10820293I hate selling too. It's nice to know in this fashion that I can probably find a better home for the clothes I used to love when they no longer suit the current me, but I will never understand lolitas who always take a gamble on stuff they know they probably won't like just because of this "oh well I can just sell it if I hate it" mentality. I think they care more about the 'high' they get from making a purchase more than they actually care about buying things they'll actually wear and like. They're the same ones always flooding LM and the comm sales with crap no one wants the day it comes in the mail and they're already regretful or lost interest in the purchase. I agree with >>10820328 that it's better to just think twice about if you really want an item and how it fits into your life/wardrobe in the first place because selling is such a pain in the ass. The whole Vivienne Westwood mantra of "buy less, choose well, make it last" is something I wish a lot more lolitas would practice considering how much so many of them worship her. > it's hard for people to remember that in a hobby that's based around collecting clothesThe whole collector mentality is also probably part of the problem. I think on one hand it's good because it encourages lolitas to take care of their clothes, to spend a long time searching for specific pieces and to curate a nice wardrobe. But on the other hand there's this expectation of having to have a lot of stuff that I think influences a lot of lolitas to buy things that they wouldn't actually want. For seasoned lolitas who are shopping addicts they feel like they need to panic buy EVERY new release or rare piece that comes up on the secondhand market, while for newbies they see lolitas with impressive wardrobes they've spent years accumulating and they think they need to buy a whole wardrobe NOW. Both usually end up with a ton of stuff they don't actually like because their purchases are so poorly thought out.