Fashion Revolution Week is an annual remembrance of the Rana Plaza collapse on April 24th 2013, which killed 1,138 workers. All year round, and especially this week, FashionRevolution.org campaigns for a clean, safe, fair, transparent and accountable fashion industry.
I love fashion, and I love sewing. But I don’t want our clothes or our fabric to exploit people or destroy our planet.
This week is a time for each of us to stop, reflect and ask #whomademyclothes? and #whatsinmyclothes? We can take this opportunity to think about how we (as individuals and as a whole) produce, consume, and dispose of clothes.
There are several parts to Fashion Revolution's campaigns, some focusing on big picture awareness, and transparency in the fashion industry, and some focusing on the things that we can change in our own lives to help the cause.
One of campaigns that Fashion Revolution has started is
Its a sort of call, to be mindful and appreciative of your clothing, throughout its entire life cycle. Buy (or make) only what you truly love. Make sure it's made sustainably, and is high quality so it will last. Take care of your clothing. Wash it correctly. Mend it and lend it. And when it's life in your closet is over, donate, recycle or repurpose it with intention.
One of the ways that I "love" my clothes, is to make them myself. The amount of time, material, and effort I put into creating a piece of clothing forces me to slow down, think about if I really need or want the item. Plus, I am way more likely to take care of something that I put effort into gaining in the first place.
But even sewing can lead to overconsumption, and to environmental issues. I know first hand how addictive buying fabric can be. Even if you already own enough fabric to last you a lifetime, there is always another fabric that sparks your creative joy. And then another.
It's important to remember that while making your clothes is sometimes a step in the right direction, there can still be better options to look into first.
I really like this graphic from the FashionRev.com zine #2
The Buyerarchy of Needs. You can see that making is "better" than buying, but you can also see that there are so many other options too, that can be used instead of, or along with, making your own clothes. Using what you have is often the best scenario, and is often a forgotten option. I want to be clear that buying clothing and/or fabric is NOT a bad thing. Just that it should be thoughtful buying, that supports a fair industry, and should be a step taken after considering the other options.
In honor of loving your clothes, making them last, and using what you have, I've decided to focus my Fashion Revolution week on mending. My original plan for this week was to host a Mending Meetup at Recraft in Indianapolis as a part of a group of activities set up by Trace Fashion. With the rise of Covid-19 and social distancing, this was obviously canceled. So instead, my plan is to offer a few blog posts, some social media inspiration, and perhaps, if anyone is interested, an instagram live mending session.
To celebrate my mending, I altered the classic "Who made my clothes?" sign or the "I made my clothes" sign that fashion rev offers on their site, and made it "I mend my clothes" instead. I feel like mending your clothing is both less intimidating to a new or non-sewer, and also a more sustainable option than making something new. Win win. I'll be sharing some fun mending ideas later this week, and there's really no sewing experience experience needed for most of them! So stay tuned!
creative business owner. designer. hoosier. crafter. runner. sewer. swing dancer. outdoor enthusiast. entrepreneur. wife. material hoarder.
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Madeline Stage email@example.com
"Never give up on a dream because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway."
- Earl Nightingale