We’ve been on a bit of a journey.
I think most makers do go on this journey: finding textiles and yarns they love, working into something to be treasured, loving the shit out of it, learning new skills and feeling accomplished…. Wondering how other garments are made, whether the fabric is up to scratch……. BUT IT’S ON SALE. And shopping is FUN.
$$$ get spent.
Guilt ensues. Could’a made that. Hmmm. Gaddammit.
We are more than just a consumer.
A festive season coffee catch up had Suki and I wondering whether we could go a year without buying as much. We didn’t agree nothing because setting an impossible goal is an impossible exercise. Setting yourself up for failure is not going to breed a success mindset, am I right?!
Could we resist those sales emails, the ones with the dress you’ve been ogling for a few months which is now half price….
Could we just buy less stuff of the fashion kind….
Could we actually plan a wardrobe, make it, and be satisfied with that…
Could we gasp have enough fabric in our giant stash as it is???
We know that purchasing stuff has an effect on our brains and emmotions. We know that every time we spend a dollar we vote to have the business and supply chain we have bought into succeed. We know that so many modern fabrics are made from unsustainable plastic fabrics which release microfibres into our waterways with every wash.
But why is it so damn HAAAARD.
So we thought we’d set ourselves an accountability challenge: can we, for a whole year, try our bestest to not purchase clothing? Exercise and underwear excluded, because just no.
Why make your own clothes?
This challenge is a natural evolution for me on my maker’s journey. I’ve watched my mum sew and knit my whole life. But it wasn’t until my massage therapist kept telling me I was always cold and I really should wear more wool. That I stopped and thought. I didn’t think I was always cold, that was just me. And then I bought myself a proper wool cardi and the whole world shifted!
Then whilst glued to the couch with a very needy infant Essie, I taught myself to knit. I got out the sewing machine, I fell in love with sewing merino knit fabric then linen, and the designing my own patterns. Suki had baby Evie at the same time, so naturally we discussed all of these things and learned so much together.
I know my wardrobe and buying habits have evolved a lot since then, but I still get 100% sucked into being a consumer.
And this challenge isn’t about being deprivation or ending up a social recluse; it’s about freedom. Yup, FREEDOM. Freedom to choose exactly where your money goes, what your clothes are made from, the working conditions of the maker (be nice to yourself!!), the length and accountability of the supply chain.
So, what do you think? Can you do this with us, make a commitment to plan your wardrobe for the year? Plan your projects to fit into the wardrobe you have and use earth friendly textiles? We only ever wear a handful of things anyway, the rest is in there as fill!
Can you say with us that this year you will try:
- To plan your wardrobe
- To make wherever possible, using textiles or yarn you have taken the time to know
- Not beat yourself up if you don’t quite meet your goal, but accept that you are on a path to doing the right thing by the environment, producers at all levels, and industry?
- Learn as much as you can about the supply chains in which you participate, find some producers you align with and support them?
- Read the labels of the stuff you own and find out what they really mean?
- If you don’t make your on clothes now, begin to learn a skill so that you might be able to in the future?
Yes, of course!
Brilliant decision. We’d love to help you with that! We’ll guide you along and share our wins and losses, plan and make and share. We’d love to hear about what you learn along the way, your struggles and how you grow. Make sure you tag us on social media so we can see you!