Give Clothes, Get Clothes: Make An Impact With Bruin Bazaar

Walk into any major retail store plopped in every major mall in America and what do you see? Dresses, T-shirts and necklaces galore fill the clothes racks and paint the stores with wall to wall replicas of each clothing article spanning for miles one end. That T-shirt is on sale for only $2? And it comes in every color you could ever dream of? You are ecstatic, but before buying ten of them, it is important to consider the drastic environmental impacts of fast fashion. The real cost of that shirt is much more than $2. Mass production of garments relies on the exploitation of workers with unfit working conditions, rights, hours and wages. Not to mention, the incredible amounts of water and energy required for the production of so many products. Now, this leaves you grappling with the facts and negative impacts of fast fashion against your desire to spice up your style. Solution: ditch the fast fashion industry and go to Bruin Bazaar instead!

Initiated by FAC, the Facilities Commission within the Undergraduate Students Association Council, Bruin Bazaar is, simply put, a type of clothing swap meet promoting accessibility and sustainability. This year as Project Director of Bruin Bazaar, we challenged the fast fashion industry and provided an event that fosters accessible clothing, textbooks, supplies, etc. to students on campus who otherwise don't have access to them as well as regular students who want to partake in sustainability! Prior to our event, our committee advertised to students across campus and encouraged students that had clothing, active gear, accessories, school supplies and more (essentially anything that doesn’t qualify as trash), to donate for our Bruin Bazaar pop-up. FAC hosts this semi-quarterly event, put on by the Sustainagoals Committee, to emphasize the benefits and greater good that stem from sustainable fashion as well as to act as a resource to students who typically don’t have access to such basic needs. The day of the event, the most uniquely charming and sustainable fashion spanned across four tables and two clothes racks on display for the entire student body to peruse, donate and/or learn more about FAC’s mission. Walking around campus on a typical day, students are often unaware of their thousands of other peers who don’t have access to even the most basic necessities for a college student. Not to mention, water waste and the exploitation of workers that constitute fast fashion today put the conscience of students in a sort of grey area. The fact of the matter is, campus accessibility for basic student needs and efforts toward sustainability are not a one and done type problem. Even though it is a desirable goal, these issues can’t be solved with the snap of your fingers. But, the good news is, organizations and events on campus, like Bruin Bazaar, can make these desirable goals that much more feasible. This year, FAC’s biggest goals is to reduce water-waste that comes with the fast-fashion industry while providing basic goods for students on campus. As well as Bruin Bazaar acting as a clothing swap meet, it also takes on the role of a hub for basic needs, materials or resources. So come through to swap, donate and/or add new and sustainable items to your closet! Going green in fashion is just a small piece of the puzzle in a grander scheme of providing students with the resources they need as well as creating a more sustainable world for generations to come! So, get out there. Make an impact.