Week four - Slow Fashion October

Buttons on a shelf

This week has been a busy one and one in which I've felt rather confused as to the time - particularly in the mornings - I mean is it 2am or 7am?! Anyway, I haven't done too much actual sewing but I have managed to cut out a couple of future projects; a Simple Sew trench coat (for me) and a Seamwork paxson (for my sister's fiancee for Christmas). I'm also on the very section of my peacoat - sewing on the buttons! Finally! So despite no sewing machine time I still feel fairly productive. 

So here it is - the final week of Slow Fashion October. I cannot believe how quickly October has gone. It seems to have lasted all of five minutes but there you go. I think that's quickly becoming a part of life! This week's topic is 'Known Origins' of fabric and yarn. 

Now this topic is one I'm fairly new to personally. I have put a lot of thought in to where RTW clothing comes from but as to where the fabric I'm buying comes from I've been fairly naive. But sustainability is a process, or a road as it were, and we all travel at different speeds and stop at certain places in our time. Obviously buying more sustainable fabrics is somewhere I want to be but I feel there is a lot more for me to learn before I get there.

Thread on a shelf

That being said there is one website that really stands out for me in terms of sourcing sustainable fabrics and that is 'Offset Warehouse'. I am forever browsing the fabric on this website. It is, for instance, one of the only places I have come across 'peace silk' - for those of you who aren't aware, silk is made from the silk worm. Essentially, the worm is boiled alive to create release the thread. There is a way of making silk without killing the worm, whereby the silk is extracted once the worm has emerged from its cocoon. The second method is obviously the more humane way of making silk but I believe it's quite difficult and hard to get right. Hence why it is hard to find and expensive. So it's nice that there's a website who offers said thread. 

I also really enjoy the blog posts from Offset Warehouse. It's through these posts I discovered 'rag-rugging' which is one of my new favourite ways to while away the hours and I feel is going to be a particularly good one for the Winter months - it just feels so cosy on the sofa with a couple of candles, a movie and a bit of slow, methodical crafting. Plus its a great way of using up scraps of fabric that would otherwise end up in landfill. A win win in my books! 

Another source of ethical wares I have come across is 'Merchant and Mills'. And by do they have one of the nicest aesthetics ever. Their branding is on point! I really like look of their patterns - I just don't think there very 'me'. They're quite industrial looking and I would love to be able to pull that off, but I don't see it working somehow. Their fabric (and sewing tools!) however, is something I still get in to! If you ever find yourself in or near Rye you MUST go to their shop. Beautiful. Check out their website for inspiration and prepare to fall in love! 

Well, that's all I really have to contribute to this weeks theme. I'll round off by saying it's been great to think more carefully about where clothing comes from, making-do-and-mending, and ultimately how our choices in pretty much everything affect the World around us. It's easy to get caught up thinking about the negatives but I prefer to flip all that on it's head and instead revel in the knowledge that one step and choice at a time I'm contributing to a better environment. Happy thoughts help with the momentum on this guys. Think more happy thoughts! 

Until next time guys!