Mothers' experience of sustainable fashion consumption: an existential phenomenological exploration within Edinburgh
Ritch, E. (2012) Mothers' experience of sustainable fashion consumption: an existential phenomenological exploration within Edinburgh, no. 359.
The research described in this thesis is an interpretative approach to exploring fashion consumption behaviour through applying a sustainability lens, underpinned by tenets of value. The research adopts existential phenomenology to explores the lived experience of mothers who work in a professional occupation, whereby lifeworlds which encourage intentions to adopt sustainability are juxtaposed within a myriad of lifeworld restrictions. The theoretical underpinning of the research assumes that consumers seek value in their consumption, whereby underlying tensions result in value trade--�]offs. As the research focus is to determine perceptions of fashion with the inclusion of sustainability, the participants evaluate a number of value types such as aesthetics versus ethics, price, quality, accessibility, altruism and guilt. The research identifies that situational values are focal; the immediacy of those consumer values contradict their detachment to production implications. Due to the dearth of information that can be meaningfully evaluated, the participants attempted to incorporate heuristic propensities to avoid fashion consumption which misaligned with their moral sentiment. Transferring sustainable principles from other consumption contexts to fashion resulted in uncertainty as to why sustainability was compromised and illustrated a reduced consciousness of what constitutes fashion production, including debating the implications of production on both the environment and for garment--�]workers. This dissimilarity contrasts with empowerment to adopt sustainability in other contexts situations, where value was maximised in networks sharing children�fs clothing, reusing plastic bags and recycling behaviours. Conclusions include that consumers can expedite fashion sustainability with meaningful guidance, supporting facilities and assurance of the positive consequences of sustainable behaviours.