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The Industry that Repeats Itself

Everyone has their idea of what fashion is and what it looks like, but we can all agree that recycled fashion has and will continue to be a truth within the ever-evolving industry. What is recycled fashion? Recycled fashion is bringing back old trends that were forgotten or just went out of style. Right now a lot of those clothes are mom jeans, chunky sneakers, flared pants, vintage shirts, and many more from the 70s to the early 2000s.

A small business owner in the world of vintage fashion, Britney Cotledge, says, “I love where fashion is right now and the diversity we have in it,” Britney is the owner of Recycled Teenager found @recycledteenager_vtg. She says,“You can fluctuate too and be in style, one day you can do like a 90’s look and the next day you can do a 70’s trend and still be on top of fashion and going through those different eras.” You don’t necessarily have to invent new things to be on-trend because you can dive into old trends and eras. Britney says she is very content with the current state of fashion. She is a big fan of all the 90’s looks and it’s also doing well for her business. “When I first started back in like 2016, 90’s trends were somewhat popular like the little plastic chokers and the high waisted shorts but then kind of left main street fashion and markets weren’t as active as they are right now like you can see on Tiktok, people love going to the Melrose trading post, it’s good for business. I’m selling a lot right now and I’m very grateful for it,” she continues saying, “I don’t want it to change, it’s awesome that the clothes that I sell are super in style and high demand, I love it.”

Just like we’ve seen before, fashion is constantly evolving and changing, trends that were popular last year could be forgotten this year, and trends like mom jeans and vintage clothes could be out of style next year. When asked if she thinks these trends are ever going to go out of style Britteny responds, “Absolutely, I feel like fashion is the most progressive industry in the world, one day this can be it, tomorrow there could be a birth of a whole new wave and we’re just gonna have to start rolling with that but things are constantly coming and going so I think it can fade away but I hope it doesn’t.”

I was very interested to know if there’s a dark side to all this and when I asked Britteny she responded with “I don’t like when big corporations try to copy vintage clothing and try to make it super mainstream like when you see target selling sailor moon shirts for like $20-$30 it’s just a little annoying because when people like me sell the real stuff it makes it harder for our business because why would you buy a $200 shirt when you can buy a $20 one at target. I mean since it’s in I see why all these big companies do it but I hate when big companies kind of capitalize on that and try to take that business away from the real stuff.” I think that’s the hardest part about being in this business especially selling clothes that are so loved and trendy, everyone wants to have them and the lower the prices the better but we need to consider who is selling the real things and not just copying for their benefit.


  • Valeria Polanco

    Valeria Polanco is a senior at Santa Barbara High School and the News Editor for The Forge. She hopes to further her education within the community and wants to use the skills she learned through the Forge throughout her educational and professional life in the future. Outside of the class she likes to read and hangout with her friends and family.

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