Sustainable style experts share their #SecondhandSeptember clothing love stories

By Fashion Revolution

6 days ago

It’s #SecondhandSeptember, which means folks around the world are embracing resale and celebrating the things in their wardrobe with long histories. At Fashion Revolution, we believe that telling the stories of our most loved clothes calls for a revolution in clothing longevity. With the overwhelming pressure to constantly be seen in new clothes (Hubbub found that 1 in 6 young people don’t feel they can wear an outfit again once it’s been posted on social media), these secondhand loves stories ask us to appreciate the journey and remember that #LovedClothesLast. 


Maggie Zhou, Melbourne, Australia – she/her

About Maggie: “I’m Maggie, an Australian-born 21-year-old slow fashion lover, writer, content creator and podcaster.”

About the piece: “Clothes tell stories and hold so much history. I’m a romantic and so to me, secondhand clothes are a time capsule and peek into someone else’s life. My favourite secondhand item is this brown checked flannel that belonged to my mum. It’s four years older than me and is a quarter of a century old. She bought it in Hong Kong just after my older sister was born and now, it lives in my wardrobe here in Melbourne. I find myself reaching for it often, I love carrying a piece of mum with me wherever I go. Funnily enough, she complains when I wear it – she says it’s too old but I tell her, ‘Mum, that’s the point’.”


Lydia Okello, Vancouver, BC, Canada – 

About Lydia: “I’m a fat writer, model and content creator who has been sharing their personal style on the internet since 2008.”

About the piece: “My absolute favourite secondhand piece is an old, grungy, motorcycle tee that I purchased at the consignment store I used to work in, six years ago. It has a panther on it, and it’s both comforting and confidence imbuing. I wear it when I have a big day ahead or when I’m feeling down on myself. It’s, in my opinion, the perfect tee, even though it’s completely falling apart. The familiarity and the colours make me feel great every time I put it on.”



Pumulo Kasaji, Omaha, Nebraska, USAshe/her

About Lo: “I am a student in Omaha. I am currently majoring in English Communications and I am also minoring in Business and Creative Writing. When not in class, I am usually hanging with my girlfriend and our two dogs!”

About the piece: “My favourite Thrifted item is a skirt I bought on vacation. My partner and I took a trip to Chicago last October and it was my first big trip in the states. It was also the last big trip we took before everything happened. We had found ourselves in a secondhand store and I saw this skirt and knew I had to get it! I love this skirt because not only is it a gorgeous item, but it reminds me of what a great trip I had. I know that I will have this time as long as I can, so it makes me happy that I was able to find such a great time secondhand! I will also always have something to remember my trip to Chicago!”



Julia Ng, Singaporeshe/her

About Julia: “I work at The Fashion Pulpit, Singapore’s first dedicated clothing swap location. I head our new online thrift store, Playdate.”

About the piece:  “It would definitely be this beachy ensemble, which I got right as coronavirus cases within my community dropped to the single digit range and restrictions started easing. Its playful extravagance let me tap into a vivaciousness that I’d been locked out of while moping at home.”

“My fondness for it also comes from the fact that I received the outfit as a part of a vlog challenge I did for The Fashion Pulpit where I only wore secondhand clothing for a month and made a video documenting the experience. It was done in a bid to shift the perception of secondhand clothing in Singapore and Asia as a whole, where the stigma of preloved garments being a last-choice option remains rather strong.” 

“This ensemble thus serves as not only a reminder to be grateful for a life I’d previously taken for granted, but also that what I wear is a reflection of my personal values and beliefs. For the meagre amount of fabric it comprises, the outfit sure does say a lot.”



Marielle Elizabeth, Canadashe/her

About Marielle: “I am a fat positive activist in the Ethical Fashion community, dedicated to advocating for broader size inclusion, helping brands increase accessibility, and celebrate radical body acceptance. My work is centred primarily around reducing barriers for plus size bodies within slow fashion, and I manage a Patreon that both discusses these challenges as a plus size person, as well as shares and creates resources to make slow fashion more accessible for folks at any size.”

About the piece: “My favourite secondhand piece is rather simple, a classic oversized (on me) denim shirt? Duster? Chore coat? I purchased it May, 2020 and wear it multiple times a week because it’s such a wardrobe staple. I purchased it off a straight-sized pal, and am so appreciative that she was willing to part with a plus size vintage garment to rehome it with an actual plus size person. Secondhand clothing is harder to find (and all ethically made clothing for that matter) if you are outside of straight sizing and so prioritizing plus size folks by ensuring plus size pieces are actually sold to them is so important to increasing accessibility of sustainable fashion.”



Learn how to write your own clothing love story here