Where To Learn About Sustainable Fashion and Related Subjects For FREE (or very little money):

By NO means is this a definitive guide to anything. This is just a list of places that I like to visit to get information and updates on my favourite topic! I found it very difficult initially to trust what I was reading or find anything beyond very shallow, uninformed, or outdated data on fashion sustainability. Absolutely NOTHING against up-cycling, but there is far more to Sustainable Fashion than that one topic. I foresee compiling another list in the future, but for now this here it is!

ONLINE COURSES & WEBSITES: 

Future Learn
A great site for free creative courses, the How to Build a Sustainable Fashion Business course is great introduction and overview to get you thinking about the important of ethics, values and the environment of the Fashion Industry, and is a very useful tool for small business owners. There is a homework, but you can glean some great info just by reading through the modules.

Centre for Sustainable Fashion: 
CSF has some publications available for reading on their resources page, as well as a blog and a couple of other things worth checking out. I would definitely focus more on their research/publications than anything else as far as learning resources, however, they are still a good bookmark to save.

Ethical Fashion Forum
One of the most resource and information intensive websites for The Ethical Fashion Forum is always updating and adding more resources for your learning pleasure! They’re also the educational minds behind theHow to Build a Sustainable Fashion Business course on Future Learn. Definitely check it out.

Fashion Revolution
They have a great booklet to help you make some sense of the complexities of the fashion world and sustainability. It’s called” How to be a fashion revolutionary” and it’s available for download here.
Fashion Revolution also has an evolving Resources page; You can sign up as a student or someone in the industry to receive different resources via e-mail. They’re also working on a Further Reading list.

PODCASTS

They’re not exactly all about sustainable fashion, but these podcasts have definitely covered some aspects sustainability. Plus, in order to understand the sustainability and ecology problems posed within the Fashion industry, there needs to be a holistic understanding of the industry, and the variety of challenges that it faces day-to-day. I’m a huge Podcast fanatic, so here is my list of fashion podcasts for some entertainment and education. You can find them all through your favourite podcast app/aggregator.

Pop Fashion
My favourite fashion podcast, I’ve been listening since it’s inaugural episode.
Karin and Lisa do a great job of unraveling the current news and issues in Fashion while keeping things lighthearted and easy to understand even for those who have no fashion background. Nuff Said! Check out  Episode 113: J.Crew’s Email Address, Is H&M Greenwashing Fashion? Bragging Rights (and every other episode they’ve released).

Unravel Podcast
A very interesting listen; Unravel focuses on the history and sociology of Fashion.

Loose Threads Podcast
Loose Threads is an really smart podcast that really delves into particulars of the Fashion Industry through interviews with big and small fashion brands and industry insiders. It’s pretty technical, and not focused on sustainability, but they have some of the most informative and eye-opening conversations and topics in fashion podcasting.

Fashion Is Your Business
Really fantastic Industry resource. FIYB have interviewed the who’s who of Fashion Business and covered a ton of relevant and related topics. It can get a little too long and business-y, so if that’s not your thing you might be put off, but I definitely learned a LOT. Check out the latest episode 135 – ALEX OLMSTED OF GOOD VS EVIL – THE BUSINESS OF GOOD for sustainability chat.

The Fashion Hags
A fashion podcast by 3 Canadians (yay!) Abby Shumka, Evan Ducharme and Katie Garnham. The podcast hasn’t been around for too long, but gives an honest perspective on what life is like for many people in the “industry”. At least for us Canadians. Abby was partially the reason I decided to go back to school for fashion (a couple of years after she did) when I heard her talking about her experience on my all time favourite podcast Stop Podcasting Yourself.  They talk about a lot of different fashion and personal topics, as well as having guests on to help round out the “panel”. These three don’t take themselves too seriously which I love. Check out their latest episodes on Copyright Law, Craftsmanship in Couture and finding your Personal Style.

BOOKS

Yes. I realize that books aren’t FREE. However, if you have a local library, school library or a good used/outlet bookstore near you, these books can be had for zero-very little money. Usually I borrow books from the library first and purchase them if I just can’t seem to get enough. I find this is a great way avoid overspending on books (which I have a problem with).

These are the books I have found on Fashion and Textile Sustainability that I actually find worth owning. I’m sure there are other books you can find and by no means am I saying that they aren’t good, or you shouldn’t read them. However, I do find that most books on on this topic  are either outdated, or far too basic. You generally want to focus on the most recent editions of any book in this field as there has been a lot of research, changes and improvements over the last 5-10 years that are crucial  to understanding the landscape of this subject.

Fashion Sustainability Design; By Kate Fletcher
This is my top pick for anyone who want an Introductory Survey about Sustainability in Fashion, but also a few deep-dives and statistics to help you get a good grip on sustainable design ideas. It’s also one of the most affordable books on the subject. I bought it for about $15 in my local “used” bookstore.

Sustainable Fashion Textiles Design Journeys; By Kate Fletcher
This is AMAZING and a must-have for anyone who is seriously interested in learning about/pursuing/understanding Fashion + Textile Sustainability. I truly love this book and ended up renewing it 3 times before returning it to the library because unfortunately it costs about $80. It must be said that this is actually a textbook, so the price-tag makes sense. Despite it’s primarily academic style though, it’s an easy and pleasant read that doesn’t stop being informative. This is one book I refer to again and again

Sustainable Fashion Handbook; By Sandy Black
This is another great addition to your bookshelf. Also academic in tone, I found this book very accessible so far. Black includes relevant examples of initiatives taken on by big corporations/fashion brands that I think are important to be aware of. I’m not totally sure if you need both this book and the previous one, but they are somewhat different in tone and  I have yet to finish reading it all the way through, but perhaps when I do I’ll write a review on it. About $50-$60.

A FEW BLOGS

Eco Warrior Princess
I think Jennifer Nini did a great job with this blog which has been steadily growing for the last 6 years.
Based out of Australia, it’s a great, seemingly honest blog with valuable ideas and good resources. EcoWarriorPrincess goes beyond Fashion, covering eco-lifestyle products and concepts and it’s one of my top Sunday morning reads.

Sustainably Chic
For buying sustainably, this blog is tops. It’s really enjoyable to visit; beautiful to look at and well written, with informative reviews.

Sustainability In Style
Started by Katie Roberts, an environmental scientist with a background in fashion design this blog is trustwothy and comprehensive. I just got into it, but there’s quite a lot to get through.

Eco-Fabulous by Huffington Post.
Although I’m not generally a HuffPo fan, their eco-fashion blog is pretty good. Ocasionally politically inclined and generally well-researches, I do refer to it once in a while. I find there are too many product-related posts, but it’s still worth a look.

EXTRAS…

Youtube
TED Talks are often an invaluable resource for lectures and talks on sustainable fashion and related topics. There are plenty of people who Just type fashion sustainability, sustainable fashion, eco-fashion etc. into the search bar on Youtube and you’ll get lots of different videos to watch. Just beware that not all of them are credible, so check your sources.

Not Just a Label: What Should Fashion Students Know About Sustainability
Not SO much a learning resource as a shop, notjustalable prides itself on being a place to find and purchase sustainable fashion. They do have a “blog” with interesting editorials about the subject as well as a “Fashion Industry” Job Board that may be helpful to some of you. Especially if you live in the U.S.

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