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I Employ 52 Slaves: a Return to Ethical Fashion

The Moment I Realized I Employ 52 Slaves: A Return to Ethical Fashion

Have you guys taken the slavery footprint quiz?

I did and it turns out that my lifestyle employs approximately 52 slaves.


That number really makes me cringe.

But let me back up for a minute…

As you guys know, I started pursuing ethical fashion about a year and a half ago. And I’ve continued to walk out that journey since then.

But you may have noticed that I’ve been a little bit silent on the topic here at Truncation for awhile now.

There’s a reason for that.

I started to feel like the practice of shopping ethically for clothing had become so segmented from the rest of my life.

In other words, I was really focused on shopping ethically for clothing, but not so much in other areas of my life.

And it’s not because I didn’t want to. I struggled with it because it just felt so overwhelming to me.

Fashion I could do, cruelty free beauty sure…but everything else?


So I stopped talking about it as much because I needed to really figure out for myself (and not in front of/or for an audience) how this was going to be something that impacted all areas of my life.

So I guess you could say I’ve been floundering a bit and trying to get my footing.

Well a couple of weeks ago I was at church and my pastor talked about taking the slavery footprint survey.

And as I sat there listening to his candid admission that his number was way higher than he wanted it to be, something clicked for me.

I either try to pursue a more ethical lifestyle or I don’t.

I’ve talked about not needing to get things perfect every time, but I wasn’t listening to my own words.

Because I didn’t feel like I could 100% commit to this, then I wasn’t even going to try (except for with fashion and beauty).

So I went home and I took the quiz. And I got my number of 52.

It. woke. me. up.

It made me realize that even if I can’t get that number to zero, there are things that I can do to lower that number, and that fashion and beauty are just one piece of the pie.

But it also made me realize that I had backed off talking about the subject because I’d been craving a more wholistic approach.

So I’m going to be sharing a lot more with you going forward…

We’ll be returning to more of a focus on ethical fashion because I do still feel like I have a voice in that arena, but we’ll also chat about how we can introduce more ethical shopping into all areas of our lives.

But here’s the thing (and probably themost important part), this is a journey you guys. I’m not going to get it perfectly. Not now and probably not ever.

I’m too entrenched in a consumeristic society for this to be something that is 100% fixed over night.

So let’s just say I’m working toward a slavery free lifestyle.

Because it’s a process. A take it one day at a time kind of process.

But that’s not it… there’s more to it than just our purchasing choices.

Leading a slavery free life is symbolic as well.

In our world, it’s so easy to make choices based out of pressure from external sources. And we’re going to talk about how to let go of that tendency.

In how we purchase things, in how we treat each other, and in how we relate to our families (i.e. there will still be mama posts).

So… two years into blogging and I feel like just now things are really starting to be clear for me.

What do you think? Have you taken the quiz?

I’m excited to start talking about this subject again, but now from the mindset that imperfection does not mean failure.

Have any questions? Want me to talk about anything specifically? Let me know below and I’ll do my best to share with you!

Until next time,



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  • Reply Emily Mathieson

    Doing that quiz is such a good idea. But virtually impossible to use. Shame as I would have like to complete it properly. Will be interested to hear more about your journey. Mostly I feel that any kind of shopping is going to have a negative impact so just try not to. That’s easier than it seems, especially when I run a shop!

    July 31, 2017 at 6:42 am
    • Reply Karin

      It works a lot better on a desktop if you have access to one! I struggled with it on my phone as well. And you’re right! When we are steeped in consumer society like we are, there is no way to get a perfect score. But at least it can encourage us to continually be mindful of what we do purchase.

      August 4, 2017 at 3:47 pm
  • Reply redhairmoe

    My first result was 22 slaves, after a bit honest correcting it was 37 slaves…
    I am kind of disappointed cause we only buy our food at a ecological food store and rest of our stuff like clothes, furniture is almost second hand or ethically sourced, also we are trying to reduce our plastic waste and don’t eat often meat or fish. We have also no car. I will look later through the result which I send to me as email. It seems we still have to change something.
    Best, redhairmoe

    July 31, 2017 at 9:37 am
    • Reply Karin

      From what I remember when taking the survey, technology is a big one! So if we have an iphone or tv or anything of that sort it will impact our score. Not sure what the answer is for that, but something to maybe do some more research on.

      August 4, 2017 at 3:48 pm
  • Reply Erin | A Welder's Wife

    I tried answering as accurately as possible. My answer was 28. It saddens me to think that there are still slaves in today’s world. Shows that we still have a lot of growing to do.

    August 1, 2017 at 9:19 am
    • Reply Karin

      It’s so sad! I really don’t know if there is a perfect answer. But we can all at least attempt to lesson that number.

      August 4, 2017 at 3:49 pm
  • Reply Cruelty Free Beauty - Seasons + Salt

    […] other day, I followed my fellow blogger Karin’s lead, and I took a test to see how many slaves I employed. Yep, slaves, as in people forced to make […]

    August 3, 2017 at 8:15 am
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