How to Compost your Old Clothes in 6 easy Steps

May 24, 2021 3 min read

How to compost your old clothing easy

Did you know that the average American throws away more than 64 garments a year into a landfill?! It is also researched that Australians purchase 27kg of new textiles each year and then discard around 23kg into landfill annually. WILD.

As you know, here at Luna & Rose we are huge promoters of shopping sustainably meaning that you are choosing plant based fibres that can naturally biodegrade back into the Earth after it's had a good time here on planet earth (and preferably once it's had a few different owners too!) We're also huge fans of shopping with brands that use Plant Dyes and low-impact dyes to colour their clothing. Not only are Plant based dyes better for your health and the makers health who made the item, it also means that when it comes to composting your old clothes, the impact on the soil is minimal & perfect for re-use!

How to compost your old clothing easy

SO, being the plant lovers you are, we thought you might be interested in learning a little on how to compost your old clothes at home. Below we have put together some quick, easy steps on how to turn stained and ripped natural fabric clothing that can't be donated into beautiful compost for your plants. The best part? It only takes a few minutes and a pair of (sharp) scissors. Composting your old clothes is a great way to treat both yourself and the environment so without further ado, let's compost!

  1. First things first, you can only compost natural fibres which include Silk, Cotton, Linen, Bamboo, Hemp, Cashmere & Wool. 
  2. Shred em': Start off by getting the size of the pieces of fabric smaller. You can cut the clothing into little squares or just rip them into strands. The smaller they are the quicker they will break down, and you can scatter the pieces evenly.
  3. Remove anything that won't biodegrade: This includes any plastics (look for tags), metals such as buttons and zippers, labels etc. You can keep these for repairs of your own later down the track (Or donate to someone who can actually sew....)
  4. Use a hot compost for faster results: Ok, hot compost involves a little more love and attention. Consider hot composting the 'levelling up', but if you're keen on textile composting it is worth it. Hot composting can break down matter within just 18 days! If you're just starting off, jump on & google 'Hot Composter' to get your head around it... Fear not, a normal compost will still work, you just have to be patient. 
  5. Add worm friends to your compost: Worms are your best friends when it comes to composting. They produce some of the best fertiliser on the planet and are extremely efficient at processing organic waste.
  6. When shopping, choose better: Aside from cutting down on how much you purchase, start choosing what fabrics you purchase. Be mindful of the fabrics you can put in the compost once it reaches the end of its lifecycle, do some research and familiarise yourself with brands who actively leave out harsh chemicals and synthetic materials in their production methods. (**Hello Luna & Rose!)
  7. Recycle what you can't compost: When it comes to clothes that just don't fit, that don't suit or that you don't love anymore but are still in good condition try doing a clothing swap with a friend. Alternatively take worn clothes directly to shelters or those living rough on the streets. For other items you can donate them direct to charities or drop off to your local op shop.

How to organically compost your old clothing in 6 steps

We hope this has inspired you to not only shop a little lighter on the planet but know that your natural fibre clothing can give back to exactly where it came from at the end of it's life. Oh - and show you just how easy composting natural fabrics can be! Remember to shop wisely, choose sustainably and always check what fabrics you are purchasing. Happy Composting folks, we sure to share your journey with us via email or tag us over on @luna.androse x

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