Why I only buy clothes second-hand.

There are multiple reasons to never shop from a fast fashion company, the most commons reason is of course the environmental aspect. But that is not my reason not to shop there. Even if H&M went completely climate positive overnight, I still wouldn’t shop there.

It all started in 2016. I was in ninth grade and sadly forced to study economics. On the very first page of our textbook there was a story about a Swedish girl going shopping for a dress for her graduation, with her friends. It also told the story of the people behind making the dress. From the person who picked the material to the seamstresses, to the owners of the label. This was around the same time as H&M’s latest “our seamstresses isn’t paid a living wage”, scandal and yes, their latest. We spent the rest of the lesson discussing whose responsibility it is, the company’s or the buyers. I argued, that now when we all know, it’s on us to put pressure on the company, that we should stop buying their clothes until everyone in the process will get the pay that they deserve.

I’m a person who can’t go back on my word, so dad; I will never drink coffee and mum; you will not get any grandchildren from me, but also I will never ever shop from H&M again. So, my boycott started with them. Then it quickly spread, as we all know that the clothes from similar shops have the exact same problematic as H&M. It started to feel a bit hypocritical to shop from places like Forever 21 and Zara when I was on this self proclaimed protest against injustice. 

I do of course make exceptions, I don’t feel like wearing someone’s old underwear or training clothes and sustainable clothing is hella expensive. I, a poor student, can’t afford that. Besides that, the last time I bought a brand new piece was in February, a t-shirt in France, the time before that was last fall when I was in desperate need of new sweatshirts and hoodies due to going to the coldest school in Gothenburg.

I will probably write a piece on exactly how poorly seamstresses in treated, and the environmental impact of fast fashion. And I do understand that not everyone can just go thrift shopping. I just urge you all to think before you buy something, and next week I will hopefully make it a bit easier to go thrifting with my guide to thrift stores in central Gothenburg.

Back to school, but in a good way

The beautiful Hvitfeldtska gymnasium

I’ve been back to school for three weeks and I can’t believe how much better I’m feeling. My biggest envy of neurotypical people is always going to be their ability to fully enjoy summer break. It’s not that I don’t like vacation it’s just that I get so incredibly bored after like two weeks so I can’t do anything. 

Normal me thinks reading is relaxing, vacation me thinks that it’s too boring and can’t focus on the words. For the first week of the break, while my brain was still on normal, I read five books, for the rest nine weeks I only read fanfiction on my phone. And while I think that fanfiction is one of the best things invented I just really didn’t want to only read that during the break. Now that school is back I have already finished two books. I love being back to normal me.

Beside finally getting the ability to read back I have also gotten stability in my life, something that I have sorely missed. I love school and the structure that it provides. I also really love being able to not be around my family at all for an extended period of time. Don’t get me wrong, my family is great, to much time around them just get on my nerves. 

For the next summer break I plan to study at university just to not get that feeling of non functioning human being. At one point this summer it got so bad that I was basically lying on the floor crying which I haven’t done in a year and back then it was for completely different reasons.            

Anyway schools great, stay in school kids. Hope you had a better (dare I say good) summer break.

What I did in Stockholm

My mom and I went to Stockholm for a three days vacation. We took the train from Gothenburg central, it is a four hour journey and it was one of the worst train journeys in my life.

First we missed our original train due to a car accident so we had to get tickets to the next train, which ended up being a half hour late. The café on the train couldn’t accept card payment, luckily we had cash with us. Halfway thru the journey, the police showed up and arrested some man who was causing disturbances. He wasn’t in our cart, mum and I hadn’t noticed anything so it was quite a shock when four police officers hurried down the aisle. By then we thought that no more bad things could happen, but then the train driver said that they couldn’t drive all the way to the city. Mum and I was just laughing, it was disastrous. We had to switch to commute train in one of the burroughs to Stockholm. 

The worst train journey in my life also took place in Stockholm, that time we were stuck there for 12 hours on our way home from Östersund. The food ran out and the toilets overflowed and it was boring as hell to just sit still. These horror stories should not stop you from taking the train, it’s generally an easy and environmentally friendly way to travel.  

When we finally had arrived, things tournd better. We started with walking around the city, shopping. By chance we ended up close to an Emmaus second hand shop and I could not pass up one shot to look around there. I got quite lucky and ended up buying a black dress, a red skirt and a grey shirt. When I was paying, the cashier recommended we should go to their shop next door where they sold vintage and more high end stuff. I found a pair of good looking black Levis 501 that wasn’t too expensive and a dress from Kenzo’s collaboration with H&M. That dress was a bit more expensive, around 400 kr, which honestly isn’t too bad, but it did make me hesitate. In the end my love for the dress won over my thriftiness. After that, mum and I walked along Hornsgatan, a lovely place where we located some other thrift stores to check out at a later date. 

On the second day we went to Hallwylska Palatset (The Hallwylska Palace). It’s a five floor house built for a rich married couple, the von Hallwyl, at the end of the 19 century. The architect didn’t have to care about a budget, and it definitely shows as the place is full of, for that time, extravagant stuff. We went on a guided tour and the guide was amazing, I would definitely recommend it. After the tour we walk around in the city.

One of the daughters; someday I want to wear a dress like that

On our last day we started with visiting Nationalmuseet, they had a temporary exhibition about a furniture designer named Finn Juhl which my mum wanted to see. It wasn’t really anything I was interested in, so I had a quick look around it and then I continued around in the rest of the museum. We only covered one floor, because that place is giant, and we were hungry, but they have a really impressive amount of art. Sadly we spent most time by the art my mom likes, which is more modern, opposed to the older art that I prefer.

After eating fish and chips at an outdoors diner for the second time in two days we went back to Hornsgatan. We went in to every secondhand along the road, but we only shopped in the first one. 

After the last shopping it was back to Gothenburg, lucky that train ride went better than the first. And that concludes my trip to the capital.

About Me

 Hello, my name is Johanna Torstensson and I’m 17 years old. I live in Sweden, on the countryside, about 30 minutes from Gothenburg. I go to a Swedish high school named Hvitfeldtska where I study science. It takes me around one hour to get to the school, so I get a lot of time to read, one of my favourite ways to spend my spare time. 

I lived in Gothenburg until I was 13 when we moved to the middle of nowhere, partly because my little brother had a hard time in his former school and partly because my mother wanted to have our horses close by. We got two horses, Chasmin and Babs. Babs full name is Labolina, but that is a character from a children’s book and I can’t have my 27 years old horse associated with a childish ghost, especially when my horse isn’t even white.

Besides the horses, we also got two cats, who hate each other. Maja is the friendliest cat in the world, she is very social, she loves to talk and lie next to one. Stina on the other hand is much more antisocial and “cat”-like. She spends most of her time outdoors and you basically have to catch her if you want to pet her.

There are multiple reasons to why I’m starting this blog, but a big part of it, is that I got Aspergers and I think that our representation in media sucks and I want to change that. The stereotypical person with aspergers in media is an awkward, straight, genius white man. While I’m an awkward, genius, straight woman. You see, great improvement. Other reasons to start this blog is; wanting an excuse to take more pictures of myself, actually become active on instagram, improve my English and just a general appreciation for writing.

Besides writing, I also like reading and I like clothes, both making them, buying them and styling them. Nowadays most of the clothes I buy is second hand. I also have a passion for the arts and I am fond of exercising. My preferences being riding and climbing, something I sadly had to take a pause from due to an injury in my right wrist. Nowadays my only exercise is running, something I no longer hate as much as I used too.

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And here is a link to my Instagram  
https://www.instagram.com/aspectofmylife/