I live in Galway in the west of Ireland. This blog started off as bit of a ‘pet project’, as some years ago, and for various reasons I started sewing my own clothes again.
I had gotten rather disillusioned with the current state of consumerism, and the constant need for the new, and the jaded look of fast fashion, as well as finding that clothes in the shops were rather limited and no longer what I wanted to wear. I also was surprised, shocked, and appalled in equal measure and the volumes of clothes being discarded and donated to charity shops. One day, I found a selection of coats for 2euro – bought 3 coats and brought them home to see if they could be remade….. and since then, I have been buying and remaking pretty much from charity shop buys.
I had been making and sewing my clothes since I was about 15, and when I left school I trained as a factory cutter, and learned pattern drafting, I was fully intent on doing fashion college, but once there, I got rather disillusioned/overwhelmed , so I dropped out. I did return to art college later and did Fine Art Print. I have sewn on and off over the years, but had started buying store bought more and more in my 30s, and it wasn’t until this ‘project’ happened, that I started just making all my own clothes. I no longer have a ‘don’t buy new rule’, but as it happens I prefer my own makes.
When choosing clothes to remake, I generally try to stick to natural fibres as they will work well. Fast fashion labels I avoid as the fabric is often too thin, and as I intend to get years of wear from my remakes, these fabrics don’t quite cut it.
Remaking has many advantages –
- the fabric has already proved it durability and laundering (so no shrinkage)
- The hand/fall/hang of the garment is evident so its easier to assess suitability
- its an inexpensive way to learn and perfect sewing techniques
- its an inexpensive way to build a basic wardrobe
- its a good challenge for sewing and pattern making skills
- and the enviromental aspect of saving garments from potential landfill/down-cycling, not buying new, and the hand made is potentially better made and longer lasting.
My wardrobe now, is mainly handmade, with few classic items that I bought over the years and still wear, and an occasional charity shop buy that was fine as it is. I generally remake, but I will also make from fabric lengths if I can get suitable fabric, as I love to experiment with vintage patterns and cuts.
Thanks for dropping by,