By Janie Romer
As we emerge blinking out of lockdown into the blossom-filled sunshine, it’s time to slough off our comfy sweats and pull out our favorite warm-weather outfits to celebrate.
Safe behind our masks, we can enjoy the return to mingling again once again in our colorful, creative community as slowly, slowly Taos reopens.
Fashion stylists everywhere are noting that there’s a general reluctance in many office workers to forego all the comfort they’ve now become used to. Others are not ready to ditch their leggings, but these can be elevated with a crisp baggy man’s shirt and a sharp jacket for a smarter look.
Those old suit pants you spent a fortune on would look fab with a band T and pair of Converse in this new normal – and definitely shop your closet before you start looking elsewhere for that jacket!
One discovery made during lockdown was how much cleaner the air and water became once factories were closed, inspiring a stronger determination to clean up the planet and live more sustainably, despite capitalism’s focus on growth and profit.
Unfortunately, cheap fast fashion sold by the giant superstores and Amazon now threaten even more than ever before to put smaller boutiques and brands out of business. In fact, a high-quality pair of second-hand jeans can cost as little as a poor quality new pair from Walmart and is a far more sustainable choice.
The fashion industry is one of the world’s most wasteful and polluting, but thanks to new technology and sustainable initiatives, plus consumer demand for more eco-friendly products, that’s starting to change.
The statistics are astonishing.
The average American discards 68 pounds of clothing, which adds up to 85 percent in landfills and incinerators. Four percent of global landfills are filled with clothing and textiles. An estimated 2.6 percent of global water is used for growing cotton and it takes 700 gallons to produce a single cotton T-shirt.
Between 17-20 percent of industrial water pollution comes from textile dyeing and treatment, with 8,000 chemicals used to turn raw materials into textiles – killing rivers. And 1.2 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions related to clothing production billow into the atmosphere each year.
The good news is that 99 percent of used clothing is recyclable. So if that jacket isn’t in your wardrobe, or the one you have no longer works for you, then it’s time to trade up. If you’ve got that bag ready from our prior exercise of paring down our closets, then you are in luck.
Shelia Ross of Reneux, the chic consignment boutique, reports that a bumper crop of new stock is arriving from the uncluttering and reorganizing of Taos’ homes and wardrobes. Every shape, size and color is available to tempt and reward. Fans and clients of the store are also returning to shop for a fresh new spring outfit – and the pleasure of hunting through the racks and shelves of beautifully displayed treasures for that unique item that’s just waiting to be discovered. Everything looks as good as new.
Spoiled for choice, my eyes rested on the bright Mexican serape colors of a stripe silk blouse paired with sleek designer black leggings and a turquoise embroidered-bib tunic matched with a fringed suede shoulder bag.
I left Reneux with a renewed spring in my step after a glorious couple of hours browsing through the marvelous collection.