Fast Fashion Fatigue

By Kaley

Image result for washing wool sweaterI recently watched a video by Nancy Birtwhistle, one of the winners of the British Bakeoff, where she shows you how to wash a wool sweater. Guys, I could not believe how easy it looked. I have a few thrifted sweaters and spent some time recently cleaning them per her instructions. To quote Marie Kondo, it brought me joy! Caring for things I benefit from was a rewarding experience. It also made me think about some of the impacts of fast fashion. Fast Fashion is a term used to describe clothing made inexpensively by mass-market retailers directly inspired by whatever might be trending. As quickly as it is made, it moves to landfills or various other methods of disposal like offloading onto friends, family, or thrift stores. Many people are starting to return to the tried and true life skills of mending or making clothing. Opting for items that fit better and prolonging the life of the clothing you have.

Visible MendingMending MattersI have both a staff member and colleague that inadvertently taught me about the visible mending movement. I’ve seen that this is taken from the Japanese art of sashiko. The idea is that people mend their clothing with stitching patterns or colors that might not match perfectly. It can enhance the beauty and prolong the life of a garment. In the end, it also gives an individual permission to let go of perfectionism. Does it really matter that you use blue thread on your black sock?

The Complete Photo Guide to Clothing ConstructionThe Sewing BookIt can admittedly be overwhelming diving into the world of sewing and making your own garments. Some reference materials might prove to be beneficial if you’re just diving into this with little guidance. Visual guides, like The Complete Photo Guide to Clothing Construction, can show you each step of the process if that is best for your learning process. The Sewing Book is another useful resource for people looking to explore different stitches, mend, or work on various projects.

Breaking the PatternPrint, Pattern, SewThere’s also many patterns to select from, if you’re ready to explore making your own clothing from scratch. Breaking the Pattern has ten initial pattern with a variation of each one. The idea is to help you build a capsule wardrobe, but you don’t have to commit to that aspect if you’re just interested in some sleek Scandinavian designs. Jen Hewett’s book, Print, Pattern, Sew, is helpful when it comes to dressing up what you’re making, as it were.


I’m very curious, are there any beginners out there looking to dive into these cool months with any mending projects?

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One response to “Fast Fashion Fatigue”

  1. Jade says:

    A quicker method of washing wool garments and many dry clean only clothes (it depends on *why* it’s dry clean only though), is to wash gently by hand (if anyone’s done wet felting, you’ll already know how much agitation the wool can take before it felts and thus, shrinks), and then instead of dabbing water out with towels like Nancy demonstrates, run it through your washing machine’s spin cycle. 2-5 minutes usually will do the trick. It depends on how much got tossed in. Play it by ear and listen to the water splashing against the inside of the machine. You can stop it when you don’t hear any more water. Hang or drape your garment after that to dry. I’ve done this for years and so far, so good!

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