Six Items

Six Items Challenge

Raise your hand in the air if you’ve been on a cheeky shopping trip this week. Yep, me too. I love fashion and the thrill of finding a bargain on the high street, not to mention the speed with which catwalk trends appear on the rails at Topshop, H&M and Primark. A replica Marc Jacobs dress for £13? Yes please! A different outfit every day for a month? No problem.

My wardrobe is bursting at the seams and I have clothes on every available surface of my bedroom, yet I can never find anything to wear in the morning. If this sounds familiar, imagine what life would be like if you had only six items to choose from.

The ‘Six Items Challenge’ began this week, coinciding with the end of London Fashion Week and the start of Lent, and sees participants shrinking down their wardrobes to just six pieces for 40 days, in a bid to highlight our increasing reliance on fast fashion – and the sweatshops that help make our fashion whims a reality.

Organised by Labour Behind The Label, who work to support and fight for the rights of overseas garment workers, this campaign aims to highlight the unseen perils of our ‘throwaway fashion’ shopping habits. Ship-Shape met LBTL last year to find out more about their work, and the benefits of clothes swaps and buying secondhand, so it was great to find out about this fantastic and challenging campaign.

You can read the rules here, but in a nutshell, participants are encouraged to ‘re-engage with creating clothing identities with less’ by relying on just six items of clothing for 30 days (after this week’s initial Lent launch), which doesn’t include underwear, accessories or performance-related gear, such as work uniforms or gym outfits. The team will be on the lookout for 10 new participants every couple of months, and hope to raise awareness and donations through sponsorship and documenting the process on their blog.

While I’m not sure I could cope with only relying on six items of clothes for a whole month (not least because I am constantly spilling food over myself) I think this is an incredible idea and I hope you do to. Could you survive with only six wardrobe staples? What would you choose and do you think this would change your shopping habits? Let me know by commenting below.



Filed under clothes swap, environment, ethical fashion, Fairtrade, London Fashion Week, recession, shopping, vintage fair

6 responses to “Six Items

  1. That is such an amazing idea. I think I could wear only 6 items for 30 days, it would be really tough though. I would probably choose a pair of jeans, black skirt, dress, and three top options.

  2. Hmm, some good options but I’m not sure I could cope for that long – I think I’d choose a couple of dresses, black jeans and a couple of tops. Oh, and a skirt – would be so hard to choose which ones though!

  3. Pingback: Rock The Week | shipshapeandbristolfashion

  4. This is an awesome idea and kind of coincides with my latest blog post where I talk about how people should learn to make their wardrobes work harder as opposed to going out and spending more money on new clothes.

  5. Hey shipshape! Thanks for blogging about the Six Items Challenge – it’s going so well, its been really eye-opening reading everybody’s posts as they grapple with the little day to day things that the challenge brings up. It really illustrates how everything in our lives has an impact both within and without our immediate circle. The ‘sixers’ are a fantastic bunch, participating from all corners of the globe and vitally rasing money and awareness for garment workers’ rights.

  6. Sam

    It’s not a challenge if its not hard. Plus the next round is in summer, so arguably a bit easier. Why not give it a go??? You might surprise yourself!

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