Learning how to sew makes you a better consumer

I recently stumbled on an article on Salon.com by Mary Elizabeth Williams (author of Overdressed) that likened the fast fashion market to fast food.

In much the same way that decades of plummeting food prices have led to both grim industrial practices and an overall decline in our health, the demand for ever cheaper clothing has choked off our garment industry, created mountains of waste, and destroyed our relationship with our own self-image.

…over the last two decades, consumers have learned to fetishize and seek out the cheapest clothes. We’ve lost sight of clothes as material goods as things that are made. They’re now symbolic. We’re buying either low price or we’re buying a name. The name of the game is just paying as little as you can.

As a consumer, what can you do to stop the madness?

  • The first thing we can do is demand better made clothes that are affordable. Support any line or brand you feel is making an effort to make quality products that are fairly priced.
  • Host clothing swaps and refashion secondhand clothes. It’s great to buy vintage and secondhand; it’s even more fascinating that people are going to Salvation Army and getting clothes and rebuilding them into something different and new.
  • Learn how to sew. It makes you a better consumer. It makes you able to recognize quality and craftsmanship, and then you know when you see it.

This article is why I do the work that I do. “  The path that the fashion industry forges ahead on is not sustainable. “ “  Every garment I alter and mend, is another garment that doesn’t enter the waste stream.  I had planned to take the Summer off from teaching but instead I’ve added more classes so you can educate yourselves and be better consumers.

You can sign up for classes by heading over to Brown Paper Tickets or stopping by Fabricker and the lovely April can sign you up

Note: Registration closes the Wednesday prior to class.

Beginning Sewing Clinic- 2 day class on Getting to know your sewing machine
Sat/Sun, July 14-15, 2012 from 9-12
Sat/Sun, August 11-12, 2012 from 9-12

Creative Hacks – Recycle your wardrobe
Sunday, July 8, 2012 from 1-5 PM
Sunday, August 5, 2012 from 1-5 PM

Zipper Clinic -Everything you need to know about zipper installation and replacement
Sunday, July 22, 2012 from 1-5 PM
Sunday, August 19, 2012 at 1:00 PM

If there is a class you would like to take and I am not offering it, send me an email.  If class times don’t work with your schedule, I offer private lessons.