loading
drag

Australian fashion people share the pieces they’ve had since forever, and still wear

IN PARTNERSHIP WITH LEVI’S
PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHARLIE HAWKS
WORDS BY Sienna Barton

Forever and always.

We all have that one magic piece of clothing that we’ll never let go of. For me, it’s a bomber jacket I bought on sale in 2017 marked down from $500 to $100. It was listed online in European sizing so I accidentally bought it way too big, which ended up working out for me because it still fits, even after gaining a bit of weight.

I’m a messy eater who perpetually has food stains on my clothes and this piece is no exception. Instead of retiring my trusty bomber, I’ve embroidered over every oil stain to create something entirely new and beautiful. At the recent launch of Levi’s collaboration with local lifestyle label Lucy Folk, panellists Maggie Zhou, a writer and slow fashion advocate, Ben Mazey, Lucy Folk’s Head of Brand, and Giulia Brugliera, Fashion Journal‘s Managing Editor, discussed sustainability in fashion, as well as the sentimentality of the clothing that ends up in our core wardrobes. 


Looking for more ways to procrastinate? We’re with you. Come on over to our Fashion section. 


The conversation only continued after the live panel ended, as local creatives discussed the ways that they consume fashion. I was lucky enough to be able to accost a number of these cool fashion people, and I asked each of them about their own magic piece of clothing, as well as what they could do to be more sustainable shoppers. Lucy Folk and Levi’s joined forces to redefine the iconic Levi’s Trucker Jacket, adorning it with elements borrowed from the past and handed on to the future, which seemed to be the consensus on keeping clothing classic and functional. 

Cat, 20, fashion student

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

I have the Moschino 2014 My Little Pony T-shirt.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

Literally just less consumption. When I go op shopping I get over-excited and I get too much. I think I could pare that back.

Geneva, 28, textile designer 

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

Probably my blue pair of Levi’s. Otherwise, everyday staples like knits and sneakers.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

I reckon I could make more selective choices with what I buy so that it’s not trend-based, and it’s just something I will be happy wearing for longer. If I’ve jumped on a trend, and in a few months I don’t want to wear it anymore because everyone else is wearing it – that would be the main thing I want to avoid.

Izzy, 24, editorial assistant

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

I love this pair of Doc Martens that I have. They don’t have any of the yellow stitching on them, so they’re very plain and I wear them all the time. In terms of a clothing item, I have a little leather skirt that I wear constantly. It makes my bum look great, and the leather gives over the years. It fits beautifully, and I love it.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

I think I could repair clothing a lot more. I could get my shoes re-soled and I think I could go back and try to wear things again in a different way instead of taking them to the op shop.

Carlos, 35, stylist and Jess, 30, stylist

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

C: I always wear these Prada loafers that I bought less than two years ago and I wear them every weekend. Black suit trousers, too. I’m more into minimal things like a classic white shirt, and I have certain rings that I wear every day as well as a silver necklace. Also, I love this Prada bum bag. 

I guess when it comes to someone who is masc-appearing, we have really limited choices as to what we can actually buy. If you’re in the femme space, there are a plethora of things to choose from. If you’re a dude, there are only so many places you can buy from that actually vary from store to store. 

J: Always denim, you don’t really wear out denim as fast as you wear out other items. So I would say, a good pair of thrifted Levi’s 501s, definitely. 

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

C: Thinking if this is something that I’m really into or am I just following something that I feel like I should buy into? And so, is this actually my personal style or is this something that I want to buy into to feel a level of social acceptance? Am I trying to fit in with my peers or do I actually like this? 

I definitely wore skinny jeans that did not fit me. Nothing against skinny jeans, I’m just not skinny. Finding your own personal style takes years, and even then, it’s always changing. What I liked when I was 21 is definitely not what I like now.

J: Definitely not giving into trends. I really like to push boundaries with my personal style and I find sometimes I do get taken away with trends, instead of just experimenting for me. I’ll think ‘That’s experimentation. That’s different, that’s new’ and I’ll give into it. I think I need to give in to that less and create my own trends.

Maggie Zhou, 23, writer and producer, podcast co-host and slow fashion advocate

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

One of my oldest items was my mum’s, so that’s very sentimental to me and it’s over 25 years old. It’s a brown and white checkered shacket (shirt-jacket) and it’s great. I’ve had it a long time and it’s great for autumn. I still wear it and the quality has stayed the same. She got it in Hong Kong like 25 years ago, so it’s special. 

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

Just log off and slow down. My thing is, I still make spontaneous purchases but I just need to take a step back away from the computer, and wait at least 24 hours. But it’s tricky when they have limited drops or it’s a sale. It’s tricky.

Bella, 22, marketing coordinator 

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

Actually, it’s a piece that’s lasted in my mum’s wardrobe. It’s a long leather jacket, like The Matrix-style leather jackets. The long one that Keanu Reeves wears on the cover poster. Anyway, this is a piece that my mum had when she was 19 years old and it is in immaculate condition to this day. It’s one of my favourite pieces during winter, and it’s my go-to piece to just throw over any outfit.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

Just seriously, wear what’s in my wardrobe. I know that’s probably what everyone else has said but it’s just something I genuinely need to live by. I truly feel like I get sucked into the trends and I find that I am scrolling on TikTok and I wanna wear what everyone’s wearing. I think it would be great if I stripped back to a capsule wardrobe of my favourite things. I would honestly say that a few years ago, I was into colour and that’s not a bad thing because you can make colour a staple, because you can pair it with neutrals, but for me, I’ve gone back to neutrals and I’ve found it so much easier.

Olivia, 21, Masters’s student

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

This black blazer that I’m wearing. My mum picked it out for me at an op shop, probably three years ago I think, and I think it has to be the most worn thing in my wardrobe. I wear it with everything. It’s like my outfit formula to wear jeans, this blazer and some top underneath. 

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

What I’m trying to focus on now is being more mindful of my purchases. I think, historically, I have been a bit of an impulse buyer so now I really try to think consciously about everything I buy. Preferably, that’s from a sustainable brand or secondhand but if it’s not [I ask myself] ‘Am I going to get many wears out of it?’.

Cait, 28, digital editor

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

I’ve got a pair of black boots from Topshop Boutique that I bought maybe ten years ago. I don’t wear them every single week, but I’ve had them for so long I consider them such a core, building block of my wardrobe. They’re shiny, sort of like a loafer style with a small heel, like a loafer boot – they go with everything.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

I’m definitely historically quite bad at buying into fun, colourful, patterned, trendy, avant basic pieces. I love labels like Paloma Wool, but I’ve definitely fallen victim to buying one too many trend-oriented pieces. So I think I could be more considered and think ‘Do I really need this and how is it going to fit in with everything else I own?’. 

Taylor, 28, fashion buyer 

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

I’m a big outfit repeater. I tend to wear the same things over and over. I feel like if I really invest in a piece, I will really love it and wear it to death. I feel like I always wear the same garments repeatedly over years. This jacket I’m wearing, I’ve had it for about four years and I wear it nearly every day – it’s getting to be a bit of a joke.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

I think it’s important to know where your clothes are coming from. Also, investing in small, sustainable brands. Wear the same things again and don’t buy clothes for the sake of it. I feel like every time I buy clothes that are cheap just because I want them on a whim, I will never wear them – it just doesn’t bring me joy. Invest in things that will bring you joy.

Hansika, 22, fashion designer

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

Probably my Doc Martens, they’re such a classic piece. I feel like they’re simple but they literally go with anything. You can dress them up and dress them down.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

Invest in secondhand clothing. What I’ve been doing recently, because I’m a designer, I’ve been repurposing clothes. Clothes I don’t wear in my wardrobe, I’ll cut them into pieces and make an entirely new piece out of them.

Maggie, 25, call centre manager and Liv, 25, lawyer

Do you have a piece of clothing that you treasure?

M: I must admit, I have been trying to move to a quality, basic wardrobe. I actually have the Levi’s high-waisted jeans and I do wear them all the time. The black blazer I have on right now, I wear it all the time.

L: I have this tartan shift dress from Gorman. I also have a Levi’s denim skirt that I bought secondhand, and I adore it.

What could you do to be a more sustainable shopper?

M: Moving to good quality pieces that I can wear all the time, that I can wear to work and wear casually, but also investing in things that last.

L: I think that I could rewear things a lot more.

You can find the limited edition Trucker Jacket at lucyfolk.com, levis.com.au, Levi’s new Emporium Store and Lucy Folk boutiques in Melbourne and Sydney.

Lazy Loading