Last week, I sent out word that I would love you guys, my readers, to share some of your favorite posts and spread the inspiration and creativity. The response was overwhelming! I'm seriously excited about all of the posts we have coming up. Everything from fashion, travel tips, sewing tutorials, to amazing recipes. Nice!
Our first guest poster is the amazing Amy from SewsNBows, whom I'm sure a bunch of you are familiar with. A super fun girl to have in our sewing group and she always has the nicest comments! :) Read below for her thoughts on fast fashion (a definite eye-opener!) and then pop over to check out her blog!
Hi ya'll! I'm Amy from SewsNBows, and I'm thrilled to be hanging out with Diane today! I love sewing children's clothing and toys, and I joined Diane's Facebook sewing group Stitch Once Rip Twice to motivate myself to sew more women's wear. The more I sew, the more I get tired of "fast fashion". I thought I'd share my last experience with fast fashion, and see if you guys have similar stories!
Recently I posted about fabric shopping in Dallas. I ranted (only a little!) about the sorry state of our textile industry. Thanks in advance for indulging me in another rant. I promise not to become one of those angry bloggers. It's a tiny rant. Really. Bear with me?
My dear husband was kind enough to drive 3 hours to Dallas, and follow me aimlessly through warehouses full of fabric. That's probably the equivalent of me shopping for power tools. Absolute torture. So, I hit the Galleria mall and made his sexy butt try on some casual summer clothes. I felt guilty for dragging him all over. He's so good to me, and patient. He never bats an eyelid when I get a wild hair up my....you know.
Even though I knew better, my desire to reward my awesome husband with some new gear won over my conscience. I bought a t-shirt, some sandals, a couple pairs of shorts, and a ball cap. There may have been a bracelet. Okay, fine! There was a bracelet. Sheesh. I paid over three hundred dollars for this stuff. Maybe closer to $400.
These stupid shorts ripped the first time they were worn. The thread is cheap, the tension was improperly set, and I paid too much. I got got, people. Do you hear the shame as I'm writing? I don't mind spending money. But wasting money on crap? That's for dummies and I'm no fool!
I'm not ashamed to say that I'm a bargain shopper. I love quality designer clothing. I don't mind paying more for it. If its well made and sustainable, a piece of quality clothing can be a wardrobe staple that can be enjoyed for many years. I've found great, used pieces at boutiques and online shops, and I've even thrifted couture clothing on rare occasions when I'm lucky. I rarely pay retail, or even sales prices. I don't mind busting out the needle & thread and altering a piece that isn't the right size either. I have an expensive looking wardrobe, even though I don't spend as much as most people.
99.9% of our "designer" clothing is sweatshop quality garments that are stitched poorly, using low grade fabrics and threads. They are often made by children in dangerous work conditions.
A lot of couture designers have introduced ready to wear lines. Donna Karen has DKNY, Armani has the Armani Exchange, etc. This makes designer clothing more affordable to the masses. But designer is not couture. Couture is well made pieces, with quality fabric. They last forever, because they are stitched with quality thread by experienced seamstresses. Quality clothing saves you money. That's why I spend so much less than my friends. I don't have to buy a new coat every year or two. I have a couple high end coats that will last longer than I will. You see, nowadays clothing (and everything else) is made to be disposable.
Please read Clothes: A Manifesto. It sums up exactly how I feel about the fashion industry, and you'll know why I sew. Even though I'm having to re-learn everything about designing, I vow to make quality garments for myself and my family, and make smart shopping decisions henceforth. Have you ever had to mend something you overpaid for? Feel free to share your story if you've been a victim of fast fashion too! Thanks for reading, and feel free to drop by my place anytime! Diane, I thank you for letting me be here!
You are totally welcome, Amy! I just read the article and the ideas of Fashion vs. Style, changing sizes to flatter our minds instead of bodies, and our (sometimes unhealthy) addiction with high heels are definite ideas to keep in mind when we sew (and shop) for ourselves.
Thanks to Amy, and remember to check out her blog!