Prague swap event challenges shoppers to ditch fast fashion in 2022

This weekend Vzlet cultural center in Vršovice is hosting a swapping event and the premiere of the French documentary "Fast Fashion."

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 13.01.2022 16:11 (updated on 15.01.2022) Reading time: 2 minutes

Anyone with unwanted holiday gifts and or closet cast-offs is invited to take part in a "January Clean-Up" swapping event this weekend featuring the Czech premiere of a French film chronicling fast fashion's impact on the environment.

"The production of fast fashion has a very high environmental tax and a huge impact on the environment and factory employees," says Viktorie Tenzerová of Na Mysli, the group behind the international project Climate Game and the Earth on a Plate festival. 

"The textile industry is responsible for massive pollution and, as a result, is one of the main contributors to climate change, which threatens life on our planet," she says.

The event will take place at the Vzlet cultural center in Vršovice (Holandská 669/1) on January 15-16. On Saturday, the French film "Fast Fashion: The real price of cheap fashion" will be screened at 5 pm. Also on the program for the weekend, talks and workshops including a workshop on upcycling brooches.

While the swap is mainly focused on clothing, books, tools, accessories, jewelry, and household items can also be swapped. Swappers who bring their own items pay a fee of 150 CZK and can take home twenty "new" pieces.

The swapping scene has been picking up steam in Prague in recent years. According to organizers of this weekend's swap, local exchanges are a great way of transitioning to a more ecologically-minded way of shopping -- as long as you follow the "swapper's code".

"At a swap or exchange, we only offer things in great condition things you'd be happy to donate to friends. The intention is to make others happy, to get rid of things meaningfully," the organizers write.

"Take away from the swap things that make you happy or that you need for yourself or loved ones in a reasonable amount."

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According to the Czech trade platform Czech Compete, Czech consumers are increasingly seeking out sustainable clothing.

In a 2020 survey, 27 percent of Czechs polled said they would buy sustainable fashion with many Czech e-shops indicating a tenfold year-on-year increase in the number of clicks on products labeled sustainable.

There has also been a recent surge in the popularity of circular models of shopping whereby consumers sell back clothes to the original sellers. Online seller Zalando was among the first to adopt this trend.

Pre-registration for "FASHION OČISTA" is required to attend the Jan. 15-16 swap event; sign up here. The event will adhere to valid epidemiological measures, while entry capacity is limited according to the current regulations on mass events. Respirators are required.

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