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DW: Poland – How two women are promoting sustainable fashion

The EU wants clothing companies to come up with greener business models by 2030, but can we live without fast fashion? Two Polish women are showing how we can rethink our relationship with what we wear.

“I started because I didn’t want to throw out an old pair of shoes and couldn’t find anywhere that would repair and clean them for me,” says Martyna Zastawna, the founder and owner of woshwosh, the world’s first shoe cleaning, restoration, repair and customization company.

“I looked in Warsaw, then in Poland, then across Europe, but nothing like this seemed to exist,” she told DW at the European Economic Congress in Katowice, southern Poland. 

Woshwosh, which employs 30 people in the Polish capital Warsaw, has been operating on the market since 2015. During this time the firm has renewed over 500,000 pairs of shoes. 

Zastawna started as a 24-year old fresh out of university in a small apartment in the eastern Warsaw district of Goclaw. “It was me and my dog at the start,” she says. “But very quickly we had 500 pairs of shoes to handle, and I had to rent a place to do it.”

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