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Overdressed

The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion

Elizabeth L. Cline

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

“Overdressed does for T-shirts and leggings what Fast Food Nation did for burgers and fries.”
—Katha Pollitt

Cheap fashion has fundamentally changed the way most Americans dress. Stores ranging from discounters like Target to traditional chains like JCPenny now offer the newest trends at unprecedentedly low prices. And we have little reason to keep wearing and repairing the clothes we already own when styles change so fast and it’s cheaper to just buy more.

Cline sets out to uncover the true nature of the cheap fashion juggernaut. What are we doing with all these cheap clothes? And more important, what are they doing to us, our society, our environment, and our economic well-being?

Publishers Weekly Review

Mar 26, 2012 – The good news for shoppers, notes Brooklyn journalist Cline in her engagingly pointed, earnestly researched study, is that cheap knockoffs of designer clothing can be found in discount stores almost instantly. The bad news is that “fast fashion” has killed America’s garment industry and wreaked havoc on wages and the environment, especially in China, where most of the cheap clothes and textiles are now made. A self-described shopaholic of low-end stores H&M and Forever 21, which emerged from the first budget retailers in the 1990s like Old Navy and Target, which marketed cheap fashion as chic, Cline traces the phenomenon soup-to-nuts from the sad consolidation of the big department stores and depletion of New York’s garment district, once supplying the massive labor needed for making clothes. From there, she takes her narrative to the factories overseas where workers are paid a fraction of what Americans earn. Cheap imports flooded the U.S. market, for example, shutting down textile mecca Inman Mills, in Greenville, S.C. Cline visited the root of inequity at massive, state-of-the-art factories in China where millions of “flavor-of-the-month” garments are manufactured for export, creating a new middle class for some Chinese while locking the lowest paid workers (also in Bangladesh, Cambodia, and Vietnam) in nonunion, slave-like poverty. As the fabrication of artificial fibers takes a walloping environmental toll, Cline urges, in her sharp wakeup call, a virtuous return to sewing, retooling, and buying eco-friendly “slow fashion.”

Customer Reviews

Overdressed

One of the most enjoyable books I have read in a long time.
The way you weave people, places, social issues ,economics and history into a powerful book on Fashion is brilliant. I feel so much smarter and responsible in my view of the fashion world from the garment district to the cubes of discarded clothes sold to 3rd world countries. Thank you

Overdressed
View In iTunes
  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Social Science
  • Published: Jun 14, 2012
  • Publisher: Penguin Group US
  • Seller: Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
  • Print Length: 272 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings

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