At Yaytrade, we love to celebrate changemakers. The Sustainable Rebel Award is how we recognize those who challenge the fashion industry, stand up for climate change and social justice, and – most importantly – inspire others to do the same. This month, the award goes to Sara Olsson.
Name: Sara Olsson
About: Swedish slow fashion activist and influencer, goes under the name @hallbarasara on Instagram where she inspires and educates her followers on slow fashion, sustainability and how to pull of the perfect vintage look.
We are happy to congratulate Sara Olsson for being Yaytrade’s Sustainable Rebel of the Month and thank her for being a real changemaker, for raising awareness, and for making better choices for the environment. We had a little chat with our winner to discuss her love for second hand and slow fashion.
Hi Sara, please introduce yourself!
Hi, my name is Sara Olsson, known as "Hållbara Sara” (meaning: Sustainable Sara) and @hallbarasara on Instagram. I'm a fashion activist who lives for fashion, but since the fashion industry is harmful for our planet, exploiting both nature and people, I’m a spokesperson for slow fashion. My life motto is; wear and take care of what you have, borrow, rent or shop second hand - a way to consume clothes in a sustainable yet fashionable way.
Tell us about your love for slow fashion and second hand, how and when did it start?
I’ve always been incredibly interested in fashion. I started to buy second hand clothing early on as a teenager, because I wanted to have a personal and unique style, and it was what I could afford. For a long time, second hand was just a compliment, today I shop second hand because it’s more fun, affordable, and of course better for the environment.
What’s your best advice when it comes to second hand shopping?
Have a plan! Create a mood-board to find your style, using Pinterest for example. Do an inventory of your closet and create a shopping list so that all your purchases are well thought out. Start searching, turn on notifications on various second hand sites, and follow your list when searching in second hand stores. Have a strategy when you shop, so you won’t get tempted to buy something just because it’s cheap.
Tell us about your best second hand purchase?
I have many favorites, but my tight black pencil skirt in black leather is an all time favorite that has been with me for many years. It works all year round depending on styling and its tailor-made. In addition, it looks even better over time. I also own a homemade yellow vintage dress that I found second hand - I feel like Snow White in it and I will never get rid of it.
How can we inspire each other to become sustainable shoppers?
Carry your second hand items with pride. Showing that second hand doesn’t have to be limiting at all, but rather the opposite - it helps with creativity and makes fashion even more fun. Bring your friends to your favorite second hand shops and go crazy together.
Last but not least, any sustainable fashion rules that you can’t live without?
1. The most durable garment is already hanging in your wardrobe
2. Use what you have
3. Nurture and see yourself as a small cog in the long life of each garment
4. Learn what materials and cuts you feel comfortable in
5. When you buy new, think secondarily in the first place
6. Choose quality
7. Can the garment be used with at least five other combinations? Then it's probably a good buy
8. Be fashionable and do your thing
9. No one remembers a coward who changes style every season
Thank you Sara. Get inspired and continue following Sara's journey at @hallbarasara