Sheffield sustainable fashion stores struggle in lockdown

Some of Sheffield’s favourite vintage clothing stores are starting to feel the pressure of the pandemic, as lockdown has affected the publics access to sustainable fashion.

Lockdown has already led to the permanent closure of one of Sheffield’s most popular clothing store; ‘Cow’, who announced that they would not be reopening in February this year.

The vintage clothing store on West Street shared this news on their Instagram page.

The post said: “We are gutted to announce that after 10 or so years Cow Sheffield will be shutting its doors due to some unforeseen circumstances.”

Another vintage shop, VULGAR, which is located in the City Centre, have had to close due to the circumstances of the pandemic.

A spokesperson for the business said that lockdown has “dramatically impacted our business”.

However, they are optimistic about their customers returning to the store once they re-open.

They said: “I don’t think our customer base really shops fast fashion, as they already seem to have a strong understanding of the negative impact it has on the planet.

“I think this year people have really started to understand that the high street is disappearing and that if you don’t use it you will loose it.”

“It’s just not the same shopping experience, and as people have been deprived so much of the past 12 months from being able to do this, I think they’re really starting to value it.”

VULGAR, in an effort to tackle the obstacles that the pandemic has set for independent businesses, have moved some of their products online.

“We’ve been selling a small selection of our wares on Depop,” the spokesperson said.               

“We’re optimistic that we’ll get back on top when we’re allowed to reopen in April!”

Sustainable shopping is also a massive part of Sheffield’s student culture, as it provides an affordable and more environmentally friendly option than other fast fashion stores.

Jasmine Faulkner, a first year student at the University of Sheffield has said: “I am really sad that I have been unable to visit second hand shops and shop sustainably over lockdown.

“Their ethos is something that I want to support, as both a student and someone who supports sustainable fashion.”

Written by Madelynne Flack

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