Custom Everything? A Winter Promise to Make Clothing

Custom Everything? A Winter Promise to Make Clothing by mikeysklar

You'd think the founder of Swap-O-Rama-Rama would know how to sew huh. Hardly. When SORR was growing fast I pissed off more than a few writers who worked for fashion magazines. Their editor would send them my way for a story about fashion, albeit repurposed. Instead they got me touting the pitfalls of trend, textile consumption and yes fashion.

Truth is I have wanted to make my own clothes for as long as I can remember wearing them. I know the limitations of premade goods. They don't fit right and buying them offers no clear view of their real cost: fuel burned, people taken advantage of, resources pillaged, toxins emitted. By making my clothes myself I put myself in the position to choose materials wisely. I choose waste. And when that won't do, I have a bolt of undyed woven knobby silk from India and some natural dyes to color it with.

Today I started with the fulfillment of a winter promise, to try. I started even though I didn't know how. I pulled out the book Generation T by Megan Nicolay. Megan gave me a copy back in 2005 when she was promoting it at Swap-O-Rama-Rama in Brooklyn. It helped me to modify two t-shirts that were headed for the trash. To one I a added a collar more suitable to my tastes, to another I attached a border changing the fit to dress like so I can wear it over leggings. It was a good start!

Next, make a paper pattern from a top I like. - Wendy

A new neckline on an old top


Joel said...

Fantastic! I learned to sew a few years ago, and I think the attitude of this post is a really good one toward new fields of work in general.

Cheapchick said...

I can't sew either. I now buy all my clothes second hand (except underwear and socks). I do mend by hand though which prevents items from going to the landfill. Good for you!

morgaineotm said...

learned to sew years ago and for a long time made the day to day clothes. Then, buying material became an obsession . . . still have some . . . now I'm a purchaser of second hand who has recently gotten a new sewing machine and can now modify, adjust, tailor, and otherwise create without having to start from the beginning. Go for it!