‘Tis the season, and with it comes the push to buy, buy, and buy some more. This year I’ve been thinking a lot about my behaviour as a consumer of clothing, yarn and fabric. You see, I have a closet full of clothes, a large part of which I never wear – what a great amount of waste! Also, even though I have amassed quite a large stash of fabric and yarn, I often feel a push to buy even more. And what for? I certainly don’t need all those clothes and there’s only so much time to use up the stash – my full-time job has a funny way of getting on the way of things, you see.
A few days ago Zoe had a post about the Seamless Pledge. The master mind behind this endeavor is Elena Cresci, a British journalism student who blogs over at Seamless Blog. In an effort to slow down the cycle of consuming fast fashion Elena has set out some rules around her shopping behaviour until mid next year, which I’ve paraphrased below:
- No buying new clothes for the duration of your pledge. “New” means any new mass-manufactured clothes.
- You can buy second-hand manufactured or vintage clothes.
- Anything you’ve made by hand (i.e. knitting and sewing) is definitely allowed.
As I read the details of her pledge I thought it quite timely given my own recent musings on this topic. Elena is encouraging others to join her and after some deliberation, I’ve decided to go for it.
I, Andrea of Stitch Parade, am taking the Seamless Pledge for the duration of the year 2012. Between January 1 and December 31, 2012 I will abstain from buying any new clothes. I will fill the gaps in my wardrobe with clothes made or refashioned with my own two hands. I will place emphasis on quality over quantity and will avoid, to the best of my ability, contributing to the cycle of fast fashion fuelled by consumerism. On that note, I will shop for materials from my own stash first. If I find myself in need of a garment that I can’t make myself, I will trawl through second-hand shops.
There it is. I’m a bit scared (a year without shopping seems like an awful long time!) but also very excited at the possibilities of all that I’ll learn in the process. This is the perfect opportunity to get my act together to create a wearable wardrobe (how often do you stare at a closet full of clothes and find “nothing” to wear?) and to finally master the art of making trousers. I may even challenge myself and learn to make my own undies. I’m looking forward to focusing on the process of producing quality garments and to decreasing the amount of waste I generate. Most importantly, I want to be more thoughtful in my choices around clothes making and clothes shopping. I’ll be posting monthly reports on this space summarizing my highs and lows during this year-long process.
Do you ever think about the way you consume or is this not something on your radar? Do you already live by the Seamless Pledge rules? Would you care to join the Seamless Pledge?