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Vintage clothing day at Kilgraston sparks interest from The Times

Vintage clothing day in The Times

Kilgraston School has started its 100-point ‘practical task’ environmental challenge by pressing ahead with a vintage clothes, ‘Wear It Again’, school day and The Times newspaper was quick to report the story...

Inspired by renowned environmentalist, Sir David Attenborough, who recently said: “We need to move beyond guilt or blame and get on with the practical tasks in hand,” pupils approached Head, Mrs Dorothy MacGinty, with the idea for a vintage clothes day to demonstrate that quality clothes never go out of fashion.

“The girls felt passionately about doing something positive but were unsure how they could make a difference on their own,” said Mrs MacGinty, “So, together, we have devised a list of 100 little changes, which everyone can implement, and that starts by buying fewer, cheap, clothes.”

Kilgraston’s inaugural ‘Wear It Again’ Day will be at the beginning of May when all 250 pupils will be asked to ditch their uniform for the day in favour of something that is more than ten years’ old. However, a few Sixth Form girls couldn’t wait until May and tried out a vintage ‘sneak preview’ in March – when The Times heard about the story, promoting in on International Women’s Day.

“Quality lasts,” says Mrs MacGinty,  “I routinely wear a jacket that my mother-in-law gave me when I was first engaged and I’ve been married for thirty years!”

Commenting on the Vintage Day, Sixth Form pupil, Gemma, said: “Before Mrs MacGinty mentioned the impact of the fashion industry I didn’t realise how bad it was, so now I’m going to think much more carefully about what I am buying. I’m wearing a red, silk velvet dress from Top Shop in 1999 – teacher Mrs Bluett bought for a Millennium party. I’ve teamed it up with a crepe de chine patterned scarf which dates from the late 1940s!”

Felllow Sixth Former, Alex, said: “I felt that this was an outfit that wasn’t too outrageous and would encourage my generation to not be afraid to wear vintage. This is a dress from Monsoon silk which is was bought for a pound in a charity shop and is well over twenty years old. The jacket if from the 1940s and made of raw silk – I love the colours.”

Eilidh chose to wear a dark blue velvet dress dating from the 1950s. “It is beautifully cut and I liked the elegance of it,” she said. “It has been loaned to be by my teacher, Mrs Bluett, and she inherited from her mother-in-law!”

During a recent assembly, the Mrs MacGinty highlighted to pupils the enormous impact the fashion industry has on the world’s carbon footprint: “According to a report by the industry-led Circular Fibres Initiative,” she said, “in 2015, global greenhouse gas emissions from textile production totalled 1.2 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent; more than the emissions of all international flights and maritime shipping combined.” She continued: “Less than 1% of the material used to produce clothing globally is recycled into new clothing, with only 12% recycled into other products such as insulation or mattress stuffing.”

Her words had a profound affect on pupils: “Mrs MacGinty has opened my eyes to the effect of the fast fashion industry and it’s really made me think. This knowledge has definitely put me off some brands that don’t deliver a sustainable commitment on their website,” said one Sixth Form pupil.

Read full story in The Times

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