Friday, July 12, 2013

Overdressed by Elizabeth L. Cline

Overdressed by Elizabeth L. Cline

Did you know that the average American buys 64 pieces of clothing a year?

In Overdressed, Elizabeth L. Cline presents a fascinating look at the current state of fashion and garment industry, as consumer prices are lower than ever, production is almost entirely outsourced, and even thrift stores can't keep up with the amount of clothing we discard every year.

Cline begins by describing how the fashion industry has moved from American production (and home sewing!) to the state that it is in today, and then goes on to describe the factory conditions in China, Bangladesh, and Latin America.

This is a timely topic, especially considering the recent tragic building collapse in Bangladesh, and Cline handles this complex issues with sensitivity and compassion.  She finishes the volume with some suggestions for consumers, including buying second-hand, finding more sustainable clothing companies, or even making your own clothes!

Readers may also be interested in other books on susatainable living reviewed here on vbplrecommends.  Or for a similar expose of the wedding industry, look for One Perfect Day by Rebecca Mead. (And if you're interested in learning to sew, check out my earlier review of the Colette Sewing Handbook).

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