Swap it: Sustainability club promotes environmentally friendly clothing

Looking through the racks of clothing, Laura Wiebe, senior in apparel and textiles, finds the right match for her clients at the Career Closet. (Abigail Compton | Collegian Media Group)

The Sustainability Club hosted its first large event Tuesday in the K-State Student Union: Swap It, an event for students to exchange clothes.

The event promoted sustainable fashion and tried to inspire people to move away from “fast fashion” — clothing that is made from cheap materials based off of current trends.

The club encouraged students to drop off lightly used items and exchange them for something else, said Kaitlyn Smallfoot, the club’s co-president and junior in mechanical engineering.

“The whole point of this event was mostly to help prevent fast fashion and to really promote sustainable fashion,” Smallfoot said. “I think a big part of it is that I don’t really have the money to go and buy clothes all the time, and this is a great place to come and actually know they will find good pieces.”

In addition to community, the event helped students develop good habits for the future.

“Having sustainable habits while in college is something that is cheap and easier than people would think, and the habits that you make now can carry into your adult life,” said Agnes Aycock, club member and junior in hospitality management. “In college, it is definitely harder because you have limited funds. It takes more work and time to be sustainable. I think this is a really great way to not have to go out and buy new clothes and get something that won’t contribute to greenhouse gases.”

The impact people have on the environment through everyday choices inspired members to join the club. The club hopes to make a positive impact during its first semester on campus.

“This is our first semester as a club so we kind of hit the ground running trying to get things rolling,” Smallfoot said. “This is our first big event that we attempted and basically we really wanted something that will get people involved and have people know that we are here.”