Sophie Slater on an Activist’s Wardrobe

Sophie Slater founded ethical clothing brand Birdsong, along with co-founder Sarah Beckett, just over three years ago, after identifying a way to help the women’s organisations she saw struggling for funding. To hear the full story of how Birdsong was realised, please listen to the Clothes & The Rest podcast here.

However, long before starting her own brand, Sophie developed her expertise in sustainable and ethical dressing. As a teenager, she became a charity shop aficionado, and now, she is a self-confessed “nerd” when it comes to researching sustainable brands!

Following on from Sophie’s podcast episode, I asked Sophie for her advice on how we can bring the contents of our wardrobe more inline with our ethics:

“It totally depends on how much time and mental energy you have to spend, so if you have none, I would recommend going shopping on Birdsong of course!

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“Even if you haven’t got a lot of time to research, fundamentally, it’s all about your mindset. If you’re itching to buy something, ask yourself three questions… Do I need it? Will it suit what I have already? Can I wear it 30 times? If the answer is yes to all of those, sleep on it.

“I think saving up for something that is a bit more expensive, but is going to last longer makes you value your clothes so much more. Fast fashion is manufactured to fall apart in the wash after a couple of wears.

“If I’ve got a real craving for something from the catwalk, or on trend, I’ll try my best to look in charity shops and replicate it that way.

“It’s really important to repair what you have. We’re just about to partner with a fantastic initiative called Clothes Doctor. You send your clothes off, they fix it for you, and you get it back! We’ll be offering that as part of our service on our website, and hopefully in time for our Christmas shop.”

If you want to browse the Birdsong collection, please go over to their website.


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