How Xingyun Shen, country coordinator for Fashion Revolution Singapore, uses fashion to elicit social and environmental change

Xingyun Shen is a national coordinator for Fashion Revolution Singapore. (PHOTO: Xingyun Shen)

by Susanah Cheok

SINGAPORE – Xingyun Shen, 25, does not consider herself a fashion or trend consumer. Instead, she is basically a wearer of clothes. It’s that simple. And this progressive vision that he advocates does not derive from fickle claims, but from a true vocation and vocation.

The national coordinator of Fashion Revolution Singapore, the Singapore chapter of a global movement fighting for a clean, safe, fair, transparent and responsible fashion industry, states concretely that: “Through my work, I wish to utilize the fashion as a means for systems and social and environmental change. I believe these solutions are community-centered dis- and re-learning and systems regeneration “- a huge shift in mindset and practice, in other words.

In terms of getting the job done and being effective, don’t even talk to her about productivity. “I don’t want to associate myself with being a productive person anymore, because what does it mean besides reaching the milestones of society?” she challenges, preferring to accept a friend’s thoughtful suggestion to replace productivity with contribution, and admits that “I wish I could make a living from this.”

The impetus for sustainable fashion should not be to create new collections made with ‘recycled’ plastic or feminist slogans. It should tell the truth about overproduction and simple action focused on repairing and rebuilding systems.

Thrifted: Xingyun bought this reversible floral vest from Oxfam in London.  (PHOTO: Xingyun Shen)

Thrifted: Xingyun bought this reversible floral vest from Oxfam in London. (PHOTO: Xingyun Shen)

Eco-Political-Eclectic

She who wears the toga out of necessity claims she doesn’t have a specific style, but lets her situational needs dictate her tailoring choices. She says, “I have the same few pieces that I wear in rotation or stretch when I want to blend in and feel safe in my body. Most of the time, my clothing choices change with my mood and how I feel. A depending on the time of day or day of the week. ”

Fashion followers committed to the green cause have discovered that Xingyun is a provocative millennial voice that transcends generations. Thinking outside the box, the deep supporter of a true fashion revolution – change in the form of politics, industry, cultural changes in the fashion supply chain and production systems – believes that “my value system affects my We don’t talk about it enough in the mainstream media, but what we wear is political and the voice of our culture: the way I choose to dress, arm myself and present myself in my clothes is intrinsically tied to my belief system and how I see the world. many, my sense of style is a combination of what I think, feel, do and represent at any given moment. “

This includes clothes in her wardrobe that aren’t currently in rotation. “I like to think that the clothes that I no longer wear but that I keep around are equally representative of my style. These pieces are not forgotten, but kept aside for new seasons and phases in my life, when I would find them useful in the future and bring them back into my wear cycle. I think it’s more than asking if these pieces “still burst with joy,” but knowing that they represent my past and future self, “says the champion of true and concrete change in the rag trade.

Xingyun traded in this beautiful tie-dye jumpsuit at The Fashion Pulpit.  (PHOTO: Xingyun Shen)

Xingyun traded in this beautiful tie-dye jumpsuit at The Fashion Pulpit. (PHOTO: Xingyun Shen)

Strong green roots

Xingyun’s thoughtful fashion philosophy “came about when I began to recognize that I have the agency to choose what I wear, buy, and keep in my life. Forgetting that my relationship with clothing and fashion shouldn’t be disposable. it has become crucial to my advocacy of greater care – not just for my clothes, but for the community and the environment. “

This need for more people to adopt a circular lifestyle is an old refrain, but urgently needed, and Xingyun will not stop being one of the voices of reason singing it.

He says: “Sustainability in fashion, despite traditional narratives, is not a new trend or phenomenon.” Fashion Revolution co-founder Orsola de Castro says, “Sustainability has been on trend for billions of years, otherwise we wouldn’t be alive. Excess is the trend and we need to make it decidedly out of fashion.” I think this speaks extensively about how “sustainability in fashion” or “sustainable fashion” has been watered down by the big fashion companies’ buzzwords and marketing language. “

“The impetus for sustainable fashion shouldn’t be to create new collections made from ‘recycled’ plastic or feminist slogans. It should be telling the truth about overproduction and simple actions focused on repairing and rebuilding systems. Try to replace processes. conventional supply chain should not be an option: it should be a priority at the top of the list right now, ”adds Xingyun.

Xingyun swapped the green dress at The Fashion Pulpit.  (PHOTO: Xingyun Shen)

Xingyun swapped the green dress at The Fashion Pulpit. (PHOTO: Xingyun Shen)

A significant collection

Appropriately, she says, “I haven’t bought new clothes in a long time. Most of my wardrobe is inspired by the people I meet, love and spend time with. Some of my most worn-out pieces were given to me by my mother. and my best friends. Working at The Fashion Pulpit, Singapore’s first and largest exchange platform, also means that most of my wardrobe items are traded. “

Xingyun is a puritan when it comes to working for a kinder fashion industry. It is inclusive and does not judge. “For me, part of unlearning productivity is recognizing that everyone is practicing sustainability at their own pace and that no one is doing it the wrong way. Trading may be my way of being more sustainable in acquiring new pieces. Others may be sewing, repair, recycle, support local independent designers or (re) wear their clothes (by necessity or by choice). It is essential to recognize that there is no “exemplary” way to be sustainable with one’s fashion habits and not to recognize that sustainability a different look for everyone is an unsustainable way of living and using our clothes “.

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