I never realized that all the clothing we donate becomes a saleable commodity on the international market. After it cycles through the thrift stores for about a month, It gets sorted by type, bailed and traded around the world where it ends up on the backs of those we consider poor in countries we call third world. Robbing them of their traditional cultural identities and crushing their local textile industries under mountains of our cheap cast offs.
Add it to the list of things I would like to be part of changing.
It’s a long and daunting list. I have to remind myself daily that climbing a mountain happens one step at a time.
Two years ago, after 10 years and over 100 shows, I challenged myself to have 50% of all the costumes I design be made of reclaimed materials. (thrifted, made from cast off fabric, borrowed or pulled from stock). The show I designed in November was closer to 90%.