Created in partnership with Timberland and its eco-conscious GreenStride collection, we’re proud to present our inaugural audio series Progress Over Perfection. PoP is an ever-evolving podcast that will explore Earth-friendlier projects and environmental responsibility in fashion, footwear, design, and hype culture.
In this week’s episode, titled The Longest Lasting, FUTUREVVORLD’s Co-founder Daniel Navetta and Executive Editor Bob Marshall explore the longevity of the garments we own and wear, and how buying better, and buying less, can lead to a more sustainable lifestyle. The hosts have dynamic conversations with a group of creatives who talk about the benefits — both for people and the planet — of selecting and extending the life of well-made clothes. Listeners are also encouraged to think about the end-life of their clothes and the options that exist for recycling and repurposing.
Navetta is first joined by stylist and consultant Rachael Wang to discuss the damaging, wasteful speed of trend cycles, the importance of fair wages for garment workers, and the benefits of shopping for utility pieces like high-quality denim jeans. Well-made items are meant to last long with the intention of being mended as opposed to being thrown out. “Longer lasting clothes means buying fewer clothes, and buying fewer clothes means less clothes that are discarded,” said Wang. “If we can move toward building our wardrobes around hardworking pieces that we wear over and over again, we can really start to move away from the incredible volume of fashion waste that ends up in the landfill.”
Next, Marshall sits down with Transnomadica and Atelier & Repairs founder and vintage collector Maurizio Donadi as he breaks down the durability and circularity of military clothing, specifically his favorite combat pants from 1965, and his method of cleaning and caring for vintage pieces. Donadi argues that military wear is the best clothing option to consider and that they are not designed specifically for war but more so with the purpose to protect people in today’s life. “They are a performance-driven garment designed for function,” said Donadi. “They are designed also with a consideration for the weather conditions, and the materials that were used were innovative at the time they were made.”
Marshall continues the garment longevity conversation with Space Available founder Daniel Mitchell where the creative director takes a different approach for long-lasting clothing. Mitchell finds the pieces that have stayed in his wardrobe the longest weren’t necessarily designed with durability in mind, like utility or military wear. Dries Van Noten tracksuits from 2002 hold sentimental value for the designer as the pieces came in a pivotal time when he was being introduced to the wider cultural landscape of music, art, design, and fashion. “I used to wear it daily when I was younger, and it has really lasted the length of time,” said Mitchell. “Since then, I’ve bought things over the years, but I feel, back then…things were just better made than what it is sort of today.
Finishing off the episode, Navetta talks with fellow Queens borough repper Sophia Chang about changing their consumer behavior from chasing the latest drops to being more conscientious of the lifecycle of their purchases. Chang is an artist and co-founder of the one-stop-shop sneaker destination Common Ace who experienced long life out of UNIQLO leggings and Nike Frees. While comfort was a true benefit for keeping items around, Chang became more aware of how much she’s consuming and knew a change was needed. “I try and be very intentional with my purchase…If I’m going to buy something, I real want it to last at least 5 to 10 years,” said Chang. “I really believe that when you purchase and invest in quality product, it really can last you till the 10 year mark.”
A common theme among all of our Progress Over Perfection Episode 2 podcast guests is the need for research, information, and understanding. What lasts is what’s created with quality, what’s designed with the intention to be part of your life longer than a trend can survive. In order to understand what to parse through, looking deeper into how garments are made, what materials are being used, and how transparent a brand is willing to be to share this information is key. As Mitchell mentions in the new episode, “the story and narrative and why that garment is in existence is an important and relevant one.”
Remember, we have a long way to go, but we can go further together.