I have been wanting to sit down and write this post for a while. And then after that, I want to do the things I’ve written.
For the last year, I’ve been circling around a group of ideas and trying to figure out how to make them my own.
This is what I have been thinking about.
Otto von Busch–
“is a brand of research project that explores how fashion can be used for empowerment, self-development and personal growth instead of being a phenomenon of top-down decrees and collective anxiety. The self_passage projects try to bend the power of fashion to achieve a positive personal and social condition with which the Everyperson is free to grow to his/her full potential by means of engaged fashion practices.”
At last year’s, Surface Design Conference he was one of the keynote speakers. His talk was funny and thought provoking.
“100 Acts of Sewing explores making versus manufacturing. This personal challenge to sew one hundred dresses in a year, also aims to reacquaint people with the skills required to make clothing. Knowing how to sew creates an appreciation for workmanship, provides an essential link to crafting tradition, and acts as a means to reclaim personal style. Most importantly, this knowledge makes us more discerning and conscientious consumers.” As each dress is made, a photo is uploaded to the project’s website.
Indie Sewing Patterns–
In response to the mass produced pattern industry many clothing designers have launched new pattern companies. I knew these patterns were out there, but I didn’t, until about two weeks ago, really understand what they were about. Instead of being cheap and generic, these patterns are beautiful made with wonderfully detailed instructions. You learn as you make. Many of these patterns are designed with the goal of the maker having some ownership in the design–they can be varied both for personal style and seasons. I love this idea, and it has made me a bit bonkers.
According to Wikipedia, “Fast Fashion clothing collections are based on the most recent fashion trends presented at Fashion Week in both the spring and autumn of every year. These trends are designed and manufactured quickly and cheaply to allow the mainstream consumer to take advantage of current clothing styles at a lower price.”
Last fall, I decided I wanted to create a sweater line called ArctiCouture. I wanted to up-cycle old wool sweaters that I had felted in my washing machine into new beautiful garments that were suitable for wearing in our sub-arctic climate. My hope was to make and sell these sweaters locally.
There are other tangental ideas too, but the sum of these parts is that I’ve been thinking about how making your own clothes out of primarily up-cycled materials is a really good thing to do on a lot of levels.
And from this discussion (all carried on inside of my head) I have come to know several things–
- I need to improve my skill set when it comes to crafting garments. I am a good seamstress, but there are many, many things I do not know. At first, I thought I could just wing it, but I now know that’s not me. I prefer to deeply engage with the craft–to become an expert before I go about breaking all the rules. This is the slower path, but it is the right one for me.
- I want to learn how to draft patterns. Learning this will also be a slow process. I may never get there. I am okay with that.
- I want to make as many of my own clothes as possible. That’s what I want to do. It just seems to me that our bodies are our original canvases.
So that is what’s next for me.
And it starts with this pattern.
What’s next for you?