Slow fashion is one of the prominent keys to unlock the door to conscious fashion. It is an opportunity to enrich the textiles and add value to the garments we wear. It adds resourcefulness by taking into use the local materials and workforce around. It acknowledges human needs along with respecting the people involved in the supply chain with fair treatment. This builds a stronger relationship between people and the surroundings by practicing consciousness. Uma, the founder of Upasana shows us a new perspective to look at slow fashion by measuring it with fast fashion.

1. What is the definition of slow fashion?
Uma – We can comprehend slow fashion by picturing what actually fast fashion seems like. The society exists in use and throw culture where products are designed to collapse in a shorter period. Fashion, the second largest polluter is being brought up with a similar mind-set. There is extensive use of chemicals on land as pesticides and for textile dyeing. Million tons of polluted water from textile and fashion industry enter larger water bodies. Human labour has become a mere detail in organised clothing industries and clothes have never been as cheap as they are today. This has only fostered ‘dirt price clothing’ derived from environmental and communal loss. Slow fashion means high quality timeless clothing that is long lasting and produced ethically.

2. How would you explain and justify slow fashion over fast fashion?
Uma – Slow fashion does not require any advocacy or justification. Understanding slow fashion is to simply know the effects of fast fashion, its production and supply chain. Cotton produced as a crop, takes 2700 litres of water to make a single shirt. Fast fashion pressurises the system to obtain profit. It hides and ignores some cost and shifts the rest to the future. The current trend being so self-centred and mindless needs to reflect itself. “Fashion possesses great power to impact. Why not give it a chance.”

Slow Fashion for enriching biodiversity and future

3. What factors according to Upasana make certain the existence of slow fashion in future?
Uma – Slow fashion can be a way to the future if high quality clothes are ethically produced. Farmers, manufacturers and retailers will be able to lead a stress free and prosperous life. No environmental cost will be transferred to the future and cotton industries will be able to pay its beneficiaries well.

4. How can slow fashion help in nurturing the various elements of our biodiversity?
Uma – There is a need to abolish the custom of conspicuous and highly inexpensive consumption based on use and throw policy. If we unplug all the inequitable operations out of fast fashion, it is capable of creating plenty of beauty, joy and harmony.

5. Do you see any loopholes in slow fashion with respect to the Indian economy?
Uma – No. The younger generation is far more conscious than we have been. Advancement in technology is able to talk green and computers have reduced the use of papers. The admission of new pioneers on this playground can make the space of fashion greener and less exploitative. “From the second largest polluter, fashion can turn into a platform to celebrate life and beauty.”