Book Review: Fashion Conscious  

By Sarah Klymkiw & Kim Hankinson
Published by Egmont Books

Did you know that the fashion industry accounts for more than 8% of global climate impact which is greater than all international flights and sea shipping combined? No, neither did I and – as a compulsive clothes buyer – it certainly made me stop and think.

This is a timely book full of useful information. There are practical things that the reader can do, such as learn to sew on buttons and restyle existing clothes (who knew that you can make a rather nice denim waistcoat from an old pair of jeans?) It’s aimed at the generation which may not know how to sew on a button or repair a hem and the how-to instructions are clear. 

The contention is that we all buy and waste far too many clothes and there are lots of statistics and facts about world waste and its effects, along with insights into third world factory conditions and what all this profligacy does to the environment. The tone is fun rather than “preachy”, although there are some very serious points being made. The part-pictorial presentation works well too. I certainly didn’t know that it takes up to 2,700 of litres of water to produce a  white cotton T-shirt or that there are up to 8000 chemicals in a single piece of clothing. And how about a fabric created from orange peel which has the feel of silk? They’re working on it. 

This book is spot on for 12+. I learned a lot from it and shall amend (some of) my behaviour accordingly and I’m very much on the “plus” side of 12.

Review by Susan Elkin