why repair matters - a post for fashion revolution week

why repair matters - a post for fashion revolution week

It's Fashion Revolution Week and this year marks 10 years since the Rana Plaza tragedy where 1,138 lives were lost. Nobody should have to die for fashion and Fashion Revolution are doing incredible work to fight for better working conditions and systems to be put into place. 

I feel a huge amount of anxiety whenever I post anything other than the repairs I've been working on on social media. Whilst people like to watch a minute of soothing sewing sounds, comments like the one on the first slide pop up whenever I shout about why I do what I do. I know there's no pleasing everyone, but if I can give just a handful of people the confidence to give mending a go with the skills that I can share then I will never stop doing that.

Below is a comment that I received last year on one of my mending videos, along with some information that I put together based on my slow stitch club workshops and the repair commissions I take on.

Do you agree?


In 2022 I ran 14 visible mending workshops with an average of 8 people per class. If everyone finished repairing the garment they brought along to the workshop, together we will have saved 112 items of clothing from landfill.

And, according to a recent study by WRAP.org, on average a repair adds 1.3 years to the life of a garment... So alongside the 17 repair commissions I took on in 2022, us slow stitchers have added over 100 years to the lives of our clothing.

Finding the time to repair your clothing can be hard, but on average a small darn will take just 15-30 minutes and a patch repair on your favourite denim jeans around an hour. We're all guilty of spending too much time scrolling, especially on clothing websites where it's all too easy to be sucked in to buying new. If you can set aside an hour a week instead to care for the clothes already in your wardrobe, you'll get to learn a new skill and also find time for yourself to slow down.

Plus, if sewing really isn't your thing then there are a whole host of repair specialists out there (Hi!) that can take your clothing and repair it beautifully for you instead.

Don't ever feel that the small stitches you make don't matter, whether you choose to repair one pair of jeans or your entire wardrobe. The most sustainable thing you can do is keep wearing and repairing the clothes you already own. Hold the big brands accountable for pushing 52 seasons of clothing on us every day whilst forcing garment workers to work in unsafe and unethical working environments for their greed and profit. Yes our time is valuable, but can you really tell me it's more valuable than the lives of the people who made your clothes?


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