Unless you’re in the habit of regularly clearing your wardrobe, it’s possible you only wear around 20-30% of your current clothing! That means there’s a lot of old clothing left untouched, but this can thankfully be put to new use.
In fact, your unused old clothing can turn into a brand new look or outfit! This is important to many Muslim women, as they need to keep their hijab requirements in mind (think covered up, conservative), but it’s also great advice for anyone looking to live and dress more sustainably!
Here are some tricks to upcycling your wardrobe, transforming clothes into shining beacons of eco-fashion!
1. Tuck big tops into your bottom.
Some of your older clothes probably don’t fit you any more. If a top has become too big, create balance in your silhouette by tucking the hem into your bottom. Tucking loose tops into high or natural-waist bottoms can convert old clothing into something that flatters your shape and is more in line with your figure. If you don’t feel like altering a baggy but beloved item, try adding a belt as a restraint. A great belt can transform big kaftans into sophisticated maxi dresses, or turn a large t-shirt into a chic, practical tunic. Cinching around the waist can easily bring the sides in, offering something much more practical and comfortable as a result.
2. Add new style to small items.
Similarly, what can you with items that are no longer big enough? If something is too small, you can add a new style and purpose to it with a few quick alterations. An unused dress, for example, can be turned into a terrific top just by removing the bottom half. As for existing tops, try adding fabric inserts down the sides to add extra room. This gives you a new item with a minimal amount of new fabric used. If that wasn’t enough, this also gives you the opportunity to experiment with colour and tones. It never hurts to experiment with your existing clothing!
3. Get creative.
Good fabrics and material can be used for a variety of purposes. If an old top or dress you used to love has an excellent print or design, why let it go to waste? Once you get started, you’ll find a whole host of DIY projects for which you can use your old hijabs and old clothing! Repurposing items you used to love but don’t wear anymore lets you enjoy ‘brand new’ items without spending more money or resources. Old jumpers, for example, can make perfectly soft pillows. Plus, these new handcrafted accessories will already match your wardrobe, since that’s where they came from!
4. Re-think outfit combinations.
If you watch my snaps then you know ??? LOL #dinatokio A photo posted by D I N A T O K I O (@dinatokio) on
It’s often easy to fall into the trap of not wearing something because you have nothing to go with it. An item that doesn’t have an outfit it works with is harder to use right?
In actuality, this is often has more to do with how we view the item than it does with the item’s actual limits. For instance, why give up on short-sleeved dresses, as well as blouses, when they can be effortlessly complemented with a cardigan or kimono?
If you have these items already, you can create a great new look exclusively from your existing wardrobe. The same concept also works for layering. If something has a low cut, combine it with a turtleneck jumper or collared shirt.
5. Recycle, freecycle, and share your old clothing.
If there are items you simply can’t find a use for in your own wardrobe, that doesn’t mean those items are useless. What doesn’t work for you may work wonders for someone else’s style. Instead of throwing something out, you can ask your friends or head online to see if anyone would like it.
Some may fall in love with your old clothing the way it is, while others might see potential in the fabric or pattern. This is where freecycling reigns supreme, as many crafty people can turn old clothing into pillows, linen, and other useful household items. If you don’t want or need something, gift it to someone who will put it to good use!
Practice makes perfect
Embracing eco-fashion as a hijab wearer is not as difficult as you might think. The hardest part is, arguably, deciding which items can be worn as they are and which ones need a little improving. Once you get in the habit, however, you can easily create new items, outfits or styles without creating unnecessary waste.