Not so long ago I was an avid follower of high street/catwalk fashion. Looking forward to the most recent collections of favourite high street retailers. The most beautiful of print, colour and fabric one can think of. Straight off the catwalk. Never or hardly keen on fashion trends unless it’s really, really eye catching – in a good way that is. I must say, nor could I afford haute couture. Actually, I wouldn’t want to either. It’s good to be different. That doesn’t mean I want to stand out from the crowd in a horrendous outfit or be known for being frivolous with money. The barakah could soon disappear and what would I be left with if I did? A wardrobe full of expensive clothes, a few meaningful memories and death awaiting me. No thanks. Rizq/provision has been written so attain it lawfully. Materialism affects spirituality. Wear, care. Remember to recite the dua for entering the market.
لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللهُ وَحْدَهُ لَا شَرِيكَ لَهُ ، لَهُ الْمُلْكُ وَلَهُ الْحَمْدُ ، يُحْيِي وَيُمِيتُ وَهُوَ حَيٌّ لَا يَمُوتُ ، بِيَدِهِ الْخَيْرُ وَهُوَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
Laa ilaaha illallaahu wahdahu laa shareeka lahu, lahul-mulku wa lahul-hamdu, yuhyee wa yumeetu, wa Huwa hayyun laa yamootu, biyadihil-khayru, wa Huwa alaa kulli shayin Qadeer
There is no Lord except Allah. He is One and has no partners. His is the Kingdom and for Him are all praises. He gives life and gives death. He is eternal and everlasting In His control is goodness, and He has power over everything
At-Tirmidhi 5:291, Al-Hakim 1:538
Days of dressing up for even the smallest of tasks such as popping to the shops no longer required in the days of lockdown. The turnaround was too quick to keep up with anyway. Empty pockets and too many clothes. Post lockdown we can carry these small changes going forward.
So, is it all too much? No one needs more clothes and shoes they can wear. We are not horses. Spoilt for choice comes to mind. This begs the question, what do we NEED instead of want? Few rather than lots. Little rather than more. Minimalism.
What is minimalism? It’s an art. It’s being contemporary and old-fashioned at the same time. It’s ethics. It’s an awakening. We as humans only need a few essentials to survive and maybe a few more for luxury. I say luxury because having anymore than one of anything is a blessing. Our nafs/egos suggest our wants over our needs.
However, I have a penchant for dresses, as much as I hate to admit. Black dresses especially. I can justify this by saying this. I shop vintage and that’s what makes it ethical. I’m buying ‘preloved’ items. Timeless pieces. And I sell my old things or give them in charity. “Save yourself from hellfire even by giving half a date fruit in charity.” A beautiful sunnah. Things that are saving our beautiful Earth by not ending up in a landfill or contributing to pollution by encouraging waste or mass-produced by low-wage workers and harming the environment. Cheaper and easier is not always better. Something I’ll pass down to my kids hopefully as it was passed down to me. It’s better to be one of a kind than one of many. And if I do, on the odd chance, buy new, then I look for cost-effective/cost-V-wear/worth every penny/conscious green brands. Bear in mind, fast fashion is not going to be a fully sustainable model. I’m only human at the end of the day and I can only try my best.
And what are the side effects of fast fashion on something else? Hoarding. Hoarding can be a by-product of overconsumption. It’s not healthy. It’s easy to fall into the trap of living beyond your means. Gluttony, is after all, one of the seven deadly sins. What’s wrong with only a suitcase of clothes? Unless you’ve got an addiction. Don’t feed the narrative unless retail therapy is sustainable and ecological, to both yourself and the environment. “Be in this world as a traveler/wayfarer,” fitting words spoken by our beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw).
Insight is a wonderful thing. Knowing you can make a difference, albeit a small one, it’s empowering. They say ‘work smarter,’ I say ‘shop smarter.’ Learn the language ‘reduce, reuse/repair, and recycle.’ Develop a capsule wardrobe. The term was developed in the 1940s and refers to a small collection of garments, quality over quantity. Remember to maintain your haya and make it modest.
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Not so long ago I was an avid follower of high street/catwalk fashion. Looking forward to the most recent collections of favourite high...read more