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Houston, we have a problem. We’re buying 60 percent more clothes today than we did 20 years ago — but keeping them for half as long.

How we choose to spend our money as consumers can have a massive impact on the industry. If we continue to purchase fast fashion, we’re contributing to the problem. If we don’t research the brands we buy from or seek fairtrade or organic clothing, we can make the problem worse. If we don’t slow down our consumption and invest in our wardrobe by buying fewer pieces, but better quality, we’re perpetuating a destructive cycle. 

The average Canadian will discard 81 lbs of textiles this year, 85 percent of which will end up in the landfill — this cycle has to stop, but how? Do you know what to do with your unwanted clothes? If you donate them, do you know what condition they need to be in? Do you wonder where they go after you donate them? 

You’re not alone! Thankfully, the Ontario Textile Diversion Collaborative (OTDC) is here to help you navigate your way through this confusion and mixed messaging, and help you better understand the benefits of the 7R’s of Fashion. Not just reduce, reuse, recycle, but repurpose, rent, repair, and resale! 

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