A neon green shacket for a white slip dress. A button down for a black going-out top. These are just a few of the items University of Georgia senior Maya Dubos traded at Fair Fashion UGA’s game day-themed clothing swap on Sept. 21 .
The club, whose mission is to promote sustainability and ethical business practices in the fashion industry, collaborated with major consignment company, thredUp and UGA’s Greek Goes Green program to host the event.
To participate in the swap, students were asked to bring in clothing items, accessories and shoes that they no longer wanted, which were organized and assigned ticket values by executive members of Fair Fashion. Students were then able to go in and swap for clothes up to their assigned ticket value.
Fair Fashion president and junior Sam D’Alba was excited for the large turnout, noting the line that formed within the first hour.
“It’s kind of like our signature event, we usually only do one or two a year,” D’Alba said. “This year, we’re definitely going to do more because it’s already really successful.”
According to D’Alba, everything required for the swap was paid for by thredUp including the storage bins, raffle tickets, and cleanup kits. Any remaining items were sent back to the company in exchange for a voucher that will be raffled off for members in the future.
“That’s why we wanted the theme. We know that game days specifically perpetuate unsustainable fashion choices, so might as well give students an outlet to do that in a sustainable way,” D’Alba said. “I think [game days are] the number one source of unsustainability in the fashion world in college, specifically, at UGA.”
Dubos, a hospitality and food industry management major, came to the swap after realizing she had no game day clothes. She finds it not only difficult, but expensive to have a new outfit for every weekend.
“I think, especially down here in the South, there’s a culture of [dressing] up for the games. And you have to wear a new outfit every single time,” Dubos said. “It gets really expensive, especially if it’s not something you wear every single day.”
D’Alba believes that even if the swap keeps ten less students from turning to Shein or other fast fashion retailers for a game day outfit, the swap was a success. He thinks that game day fashion has the ability to promote some level of sustainability through donations and recycling of outfits, however he also understands that being fully sustainable is not always possible.
“Everyone buys fast fashion,” D’Alba said. “There’s no way to avoid it, so there’s no reason to shame them.”
D’Alba hopes events like clothing swaps and vintage pop-up markets will show students there are other alternatives and make sustainable options more affordable and attainable.
Averi Daniel, a senior political science major, makes it a point to thrift often but still turns to Amazon for certain things she can’t afford to buy full price. With the rise in popularity of thrifting hauls on TikTok, Daniel, who has faced her own financial struggles, has seen thrift stores like Goodwill increase their prices.
Many students, including Dubos and Daniel, cited saving money as their main reason for attending the swap.
“Here you’re guaranteed that they’ll take all your clothes, and then you can get new clothes out of it immediately and without them being thrown away,” Daniel said.
Fair Fashion UGA plans to host another swap towards the end of the semester as students transition into their winter wardrobes.