30 Wears: Lucinda Peyton-Jones
Everything I’m wearing has been worn more than 30 times. I’m not even sure I could tell you where most of it came from originally! A girlfriend gave me this cardigan for my birthday a few years ago but I’m not sure about the rest.
I've never enjoyed clothes shopping. When I was younger it would bring tears to my eyes. Everyone else was a size 8/10 and I was always a 14. Biba and all those old designers made clothes for stick insects. There was nothing for hips and boobs. It was Purgatory. So I have never been someone who shops to cheer themselves up. It would just make me feel worse.
I’ve got to an age where being comfortable is the most important thing. I no longer feel I need to be "on trend". That's my daughters' jobs. I work as a Reiki therapist, so I need practicality in my clothing. I need to be able to move easily but I can't have things flapping about, One day a week I'm in a hospice which requires me to roll my sleeves up to my elbows for germ control.
My shopping habits are dependent on my purse strings. For work clothes I've had a lot of luck with supermarkets. Particularly comfortable trousers I wear everyday that just go in the washing machine. LK Bennett trousers are lovely and the fabrics are delicious but I can't always afford them and you can't be as tough on them as I am with clothes I wear 4/5 times a week.
I'm very aware that cheaper clothes may have been made in factories that are likely not to be looking after their employees and I would love that to put me off. But it depends so much on my finances at the time. If you could show me a high street company that is equally affordable, fits my body and is made fairly then I'm sold but I can't always afford to go to Hobbs.
It used to be cheaper to make your own clothes than to buy them in the shops. But now its 10 times more expensive to do it myself. It should at least be on a par. It changes the way we value things when clothes are the same price as a sandwich.
I think its a cop out for brands to blame the consumers for causing this. According to the Fair Wear Foundation it would cost an extra 27 cents for a t-shirt to have been made by someone earning a living wage in India. If that is added to our cost, so the brand's profits remain the same, it is equal to a 5.4% increase for us, the consumer. Primark could put their prices up from £5 to £6 without anyone noticing. Its called stealth.
I think the responsibility lies with a combination of people but you start with the brands saying "this is what we want and we will pay £X. We require proof that you are paying your workers this amount or will take our business elsewhere". The companies taking their business to the factories hold the purse strings so they have the power to say- fix it or lose it. They must be held accountable when things go wrong.
But change happens very slowly, I understand that. It took years for my daughter to get me out of wide legged trousers into a "skinny" cut.