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My Clothes are Rags

I have to be examined for holes before I leave the house. I REALLY need to go shopping but, I’m stumped:

Where can we find fair trade clothes? And can we assume that clothes made in the US include living wages for the makers? What about the cloth? How can we find where the cloth is made and if it’s made with living wage labor?

So with all those questions in mind, where is a not-rich person of conscience supposed to buy clothes.

28 Responses

  1. I make my own. If I was as worried as you are about foreign labor, that’s what I’d do. There are enough textiles manufactured in the US to keep you well-dressed. If you can’t sew, you could hire a seamstress and pay her a fair wage yourself. You might not be able to afford as many clothes, but they would fit you well, and be well-constructed.

    • I do sew but, our local fabric stores have all (or mostly all) imported fabric. Where do you get yours?

      Also, it’s not just me … What if a well meaning woman just wants a new tee-shirt? Does it HAVE to be this big a deal?

    • Do you also grow the cotton and flax, harvest it yourself, and spin the fibers into thread before you weave it on your handmade loom? Because that’s what Martha Stewart would do.
      Shouldn’t you be pulling a plough or something, elliesmom?

      • There are no clothes RD. This happened while we were working like slaves and people outsourced that industry too. ps: on the fabric? It’s all made overseas at the store I go to. A grim situation.

  2. i’m thinking in terms of second hand stuff. starve the corporate beast.

  3. Right on RD
    From my blog at Corre te:

    Globalization has been the ingenious “get out of jail free” card the corporations have played:

    As these “savvy businessmen” go global to freely impose the conditions which appalled America a century ago (The number of confirmed dead from the Bangladesh garment factory collapse and fire Is approaching and will certainly surpass 1000Globalization has been the ingenious “get out of jail free” card the corporations have played:

    As these “savvy businessmen” go global to freely impose the conditions which appalled America a century ago (The number of confirmed dead from the Bangladesh garment factory collapse and fire Is approaching and will certainly surpass 1000,)

    I offer this:

    The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire of 1911:
    Read More:
    http://www.correntewire.com/this_cant_be_happening

    Sent from my iPhone,)

    I offer this:

    The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire of 1911:

    http://www.correntewire.com/this_cant_be_happening

    Sent from my iPhone

  4. Sorry – my fingers failed me on the iPhone.

  5. http://fashioningchange.com/
    has some great information.

  6. I second the second-hand clothes suggestion! I’m an avid thrifter and sometimes you can even find cool vintage finds made in the U.S.A.!(That’s rare , though, and I’m usually too fat for them).

  7. Yes, it’s funny. I’ve culled a pile of stuff to GIVE to a Thrift Store but, I hadn’t thought of buying clothes there. I’ve got a sort of funny shape so buying clothes is sometimes difficult. But, there are a lot of thrift stores out there.

    And I won’t be contributing – directly at least – to tragedies like Bangladesh.

  8. Pressed by Consumers, Retailers Are Revealing More – NYTimes.com

    “Nordstrom says it is considering adding information about clothes produced in humane working conditions.”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/09/business/global/fair-trade-movement-extends-to-clothing.html?hp&_r=0

    I guess that’s something.

    • That was a pretty good story! It led me to The https://www.everlane.com/about that linked page sounds pretty good to me.

      What do you guys think?

      Their Tee-Shirts are under $20 which seems pretty reasonable to me. Considering that I expect my tee-shirts last 10-15 years.

      Still like the 2nd Hand Clothes idea too. But Tee-Shirts can be hard to find there.

  9. Buying and reusing secondhand clothing is also good the planet. Consider all the resources put into the production of clothing including transportation and toss in all the chemicals and water used to produce fibers for fabric (natural and manmade) and pretty soon the impact on the environment and people really adds up.

    • I totally agree with this. I just hope I can find some tee-shirts in new-ish condition. I wear mine for 20 years including years as sleepers.

      • Hmmm, maybe those union T-shirt shops that print up stuff for companies and special events would be willing to part with some plain versions…

        • The problem is that I do want them styled for women. Men’s tee-shirts look really awful on me. And women’s tee-shirts are needlessly expensive.

          It’s just frustrating. I hate shopping for clothes.

      • katiebird, you really are a girl after my own heart.

        • 🙂 Thanks! …. (Where do you get your clothes)

          • Aw, jeez, I haven’t bought any in quite a while.
            I used to like the Basic Edition line at KMart, those clothes were all cotton, comfortable and made in America!

          • I just went to the K-Mart Website. By style and price it looks like what I want!

            Thank you VERY, very much!!!

          • Maybe they were and maybe somewhere they still are, but I just went to the Kmart site and the three Basic Editions tees I checked all said “imported” at the bottom of the blurb.

            Check each offering.

        • This won’t be the price set that you are accustomed to but they are made in the USA:

          https://retail.royalapparel.net/usa-made-apparel.html?gclid=CO2C6brhibcCFS9dQgodCVcA-Q

          It takes a whole different mindset to shop American. Some things just aren’t available. I spent a month off and on looking for an electric skillet without the creepy silicone coating. I finally was lucky and found two functioning ones at the local thrift store.

          • You are right; seven or eight years ago, they were made in America.
            However, they may still be comfortable and I see that they are all cotton.

          • At some point, I’ll have to buy something even if it’s evil. But, I intend to whine about it.

          • It really DOES take a new mindset. Luckily we are a Thrift Store family (in fact we call the city’s Large Item Pickup day, “Free Trash Day” … we’ve got some GREAT lawnmowers among other things.

            My problem is the tee-shirt issue. I haven’t had great luck there with tee shirts for me.

            And I did notice on the Kmart site that they didn’t say where they’re made so I was going to check at the store. Although the fabric thing is a HUGE issue too.

          • It really DOES take a new mindset. Luckily we are a Thrift Store family (in fact we call the city’s Large Item Pickup day, “Free Trash Day” … we’ve got some GREAT lawnmowers among other things.

            My problem is the tee-shirt issue. I haven’t had great luck there with tee shirts for me.

            And I did notice on the Kmart site that they didn’t say where they’re made so I was going to check at the store. Although the fabric thing is a HUGE issue too.

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