How to Make Your Clothes Last Longer - Caring for the Environment and Your Wallet

Following on from our post about Yarn's sustainable mission, here is another crucial way we can all care for the environment and our wallets. It all starts with purchasing quality clothing from brands such as the ones we stock here at Yarn Marketplace. Clothing that is constructed well and made of high quality materials will always last longer and as such, results in less wastage and pollution of our environment. In the long run because quality clothing lasts longer, you will find that you are spending much less money.  

The second part of making your clothes last is of course taking good care of them. There are many easy tips and habits you can establish that will significantly increase the longevity of your garments, keeping them out of landfill and allowing you to enjoy them for longer.

Freshly washed clothes hang drying on clothesline

Image by Daniel Spase

Wash less - The most simple and important thing you can do is to not wash your clothes. Don’t worry, we’re not saying forever, just try to reduce the frequency. The more that your garments are washed the more worn out and faded they become. Start off by reducing your washes of items such as jeans. They tend not to get dirty easily and can be worn many times before they are really in need of a wash.   

Wash carefully- The first step is to always look at the tag with the washing instructions for your clothes, these instructions are specifically designed to keep the garment in good condition. If hand washing and air drying isn’t your thing, avoid clothing with these requirements and make checking washing instructions a part of your shopping process. The second important step is to always wash with cold water. Hot water wears out and fades clothing much faster. It also causes the break-down of inks and as we’ve all experienced, it will shrink your clothing. Through using cold water you are being more sustainable by lowering your energy consumption and saving money.

Washing machine and dryer

Image by Chrissie Kremer

Use washing bags - Using washing bags will protect your clothing from the wear and tear of being tumbled around in a washing machine, they are particularly important for delicates. Washing bags such as GuppyFriend also prevent microfiber pollution of waterways. Another way of preventing this issue is by using the Cora Ball. It is a ball that you pop into your washing machine and it collects the microfibres so you can then dispose of them appropriately in the bin.

Here at Yarn, our cotton tees, hoodies and bags are a great natural fibre alternative that don’t create harmful microfibres. These products are made from a high quality cotton and are screen printed with environmentally inks here in Brisbane.  


Treat delicate items like they’re delicate - If you have delicate items such as our women's blouses with special washing and drying instructions it is important to follow them. We know how tempting it is to chuck them in the washing machine or the dryer but these items can be easily damaged. Hand washing and air drying is always the gentlest way of looking after clothes.

Rotate your clothes - We all have our favourite pair of jeans or t-shirt that we love to wear all the time, however rotating your clothes will result in far less wear and tear. If you find this difficult to do, it can be helpful to create a system where your freshly washed clothes go to the back of your wardrobe or drawers, and the other items move forward.

Learn basic repairs - Learning how to repair simple things such as small tears, loose hems and replacing buttons is a great way of keeping your clothes for longer and saving money. 

These are just a few simple tips we can all get on board with to increase the life of our clothes and reduce our waste. We are all becoming increasingly aware of plastic waste but textile waste is also a huge problem that we need to be focusing on. Australia currently ranks number 2 in the world for textile disposal. An average Australian buys about 27kg of textiles every year and shockingly disposes of approximately 23kg every year. This is a huge waste of resources everyone can help change by simply donating unwanted clothes to charities who will sell the quality items and send poor quality items on to be repurposed. We hope that this encourages everyone to buy quality and take proper care of their clothes because we can all have a positive impact on our society and environment.