© Style Dtour 2016. Affiliate links are used and may result in commission earnings. Powered by Blogger.

Sustainable What? Part 1

Self sewn Clyde jumpsuit from the recently released Elizabeth Suzann patterns
Backpack: Clare V Agnes
     I sat down to write about a jumpsuit and over 1,300 words later I instead have this post and nothing about the jumpsuit, so more about that garment will come in a to-be-written Part 2.  
      Back in April of 2013, a garment factory in Bangladesh collapsed resulting in the injury of over 2,500 people and the death of over 1,000. You might have read about the Rana Plaza collapse, either at the time or in one of the many think pieces written about it since then, calling into question the true price of fast fashion. Several well known brands did business with this factory, including Primark, Zara, Mango and Walmart. The building had been deemed unsafe and yet garment workers were sent back into the factory to keep production going. 
     At the time I was living in New York and a good part of my clothing was made up of fast fashion purchases. I was developing an interest in learning where my clothing was made, and by whom (which was then and is now still surprisingly hard to discern as there is a real lack of transparency from brands), as well as having more disposable income than I had had in the past and I remember Rana Plaza making a big impression on me. Starting in 2014 I began tracking my clothing purchases in a spreadsheet, so I could get a better idea of what I purchased and from where. It wasn't driven by ethical concerns, exactly, but rather to help me answer questions I didn't know the answer to. How much money was I spending in a year? Were the clothes new or used? How long did the clothes I buy last? How happy was I with those purchases after a year or two? 
     This practice has helped me significantly reduce new fast fashion from my life. Ethical concerns aside the pieces often didn't make the grade: falling apart more quickly or having poorer fit or more uncomfortable fabrics. It has also caused me to more deeply grapple with the idea of sustainability and fashion. The design, production, manufacturing, marketing, and selling of clothes has costs and I believe that when clothes are cheap for me the consumer, it does not mean that those clothes are in fact "cheap", instead it just means that someone else in the supply chain is paying the price in order for them to be that way. 

DIY: T-shirt Repurpose

      Are you looking for distraction? Do you have a sewing machine? This shirt project, which essentially consists of Frankenstein-ing two tops together, was inspired by a vlog post by Letitia Kiu. It was also the only time one of those "recommended" videos on the right side of YouTube has come through for me. I instantly loved this idea and think it would be a fun project to do with friends (you know, one day, when it doesn't feel negligent to be in someone's house or wear their clothes). You could all bring those leftover 5k/work event/volunteering tees that you sometimes wear to bed but mostly just live in the back of your closet, and mix and match them into new creations. The sewing is the easy part here (the first one took me about 20 minutes and the second one took much less than that) so if one of you has a sewing machine it wouldn't be too laborious to do that part together as well. (Also, for anyone who sews, I think on future projects like this, since I don't have a serger, a french seam would be the perfect secure, classy seam choice.) 

These were my shirts: