Saturday, 8 February 2014

IBSN Number and All: Forever in Text

2014 has started well for me, Shed me Clothes and I have been featured in a publication: Alison Gwilt's 'A Practical Guide To Sustainable Fashion' Ta daaaaaaaaaaa..

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I’ve been rather quiet on the Sustainable Fashion front of recent months, however I plan to get my teeth back into it this year. Watch this space.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

In 2014 I will...

- Read more
- Write more
- Make more
- Travel more
- 'Be more better' (Broad, J., 2014)

After a pep talk with a friend, I have realised that I should set myself goals for 2014. The above goals are vague, but I will expand upon them in my mind and hopefully on this blog.

Motivation is what I need. This is my starting point.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Fix It

With much excitement, I have just discovered the Textile Toolbox
Textile Toolbox is the TED’s web platform project with MISTRA, that in their words is aimed at creating systemic change within the fashion industry through ‘interconnected design thinking and processes for sustainable textiles and fashion’

Stuffed with articles from the industry’s greatest thinkers across a variety of disciplines, this website is a goldmine for discovering new ideas. The articles and posts will form a basis of a report due to be published this year (so watch this space).

Below is a list of the disciplines covered on the website: 
  • Design to Minimise Waste 
  • Design for Cyclability 
  • Design to Reduce Chemical Impacts 
  • Design to Reduce Energy & Water Use 
  • Design that Explores Clean/Better Technologies 
  • Design that Looks at Models from History & Nature 
  • Design for Ethical Production 
  • Design to Reduce the Need to Consume 
  • Design to Dematerialise & Develop Systems & Services 
  • Design Activism

Swing on by, have a read and feel inspired.

Image source:Textile Toolbox

Thursday, 18 April 2013

On Your Marks..Get Set..SEW!

Currently on our TV screens is another reality competition TV show. But not your usual singing competition that has dominated the TV schedule for so long, oh no, this is a sewing competition. Oh the joy! That exclamation mark is completely valid, I have to say 'I love it'.

Image source: The Mirror  

The BBC is airing The Great British Sewing Bee on a Monday night, much likely due to the success of The Great British Bake Off. Wouldn't the WI be proud?

Like any other competition format, the contestants are set a series of challenges, judged and eliminated with the final contestant adorned the winner. Challenges have included (up to episode 2, sorry I need to catch up on the current episode 3):
  • Sew an A-line skirt
  • Customise a shirt 
  • Create (and design) a made to measure dress
  • Sew a pair of mens trousers
  • Customise a skirt with the addition of pockets
  • Create (and design) a made to measure shirt
The show is brilliant at explaining patterns, how the pattern pieces fit together and specific styling details. I chuckled at the contestants struggling with the fly construction (I remember suffering with this at Uni) and the waistband seam on Mens trousers (my stint as a Menswear garment tech really have taught me a lot). Choice of fabric is highlighted and print placement as other important factors when contrusting a garment.

Image source: sewaholic

Basically, I watch this programme and almost feel like I'm at work (minus the sewing machine) and find it incredibly enjoyable. I have learnt from watching, that I truely love my job and that I miss the creative process and speed of sewing.

I would love to give sewing clothes another bash. My only hindrance being that I'll want a technical sheet for every fabric I choose! You just can't take the tech (or geek, I forget which one) out of the girl.

P.S Hopefully people will develop a new found appreciation of clothing and how it's made from this programme.

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Sir Pugsalott Comes to Form

I've been off work ill the last two days and have hated not being kept busy. After numerous lemon and ginger teas and season 7 of The Simpsons I started to get a little bored (of the repetition, not The Simpsons).

I dug out my last knitting project, found a new drama Broadchurch (a fantastic detective programme my mum would be proud of) and made another lemon and ginger tea. With supplies in place I got to work. 

Say 'hello' to Sir Pugsalott. 


And, because she's amazing I had to include the inspiration. Doesn't she look happy?

Note to Catherine: I'd rather poke my eye with a rusty fork than watch Jeremy Kyle.

Thursday, 28 February 2013

And the Winner Is…you?

The Observer Ethical Awards, in association with Ecover, are seeking out the initiatives, campaign and people that promote living and acting sustainability. Held annually the awards draw attention to those businesses and projects that make ethical living accessible while also highlighting the younger members in our society determined to make the world a better place for theirs and future generations.

There are up to 10 award categories that celebrate all areas of sustainable living including retailer, travel, arts and culture and campaigner to name a few. (For the full list of the award categories visit The Guardian website). There are two categories that particularly caught my attention: Ecover Young Green Champion and the Well Dressed Award.

Ecover Young Green Champion

Under 18’s have brilliant ethical ideas and this award is their chance to let everyone know about them. Previous winning ideas have include Fact Fashion that provoke thought through informative slogans on clothing, Savvy BOB Box  promotes indigenous wildlife and the entrepreneurial The Recyclists have created a business by recycling for others on their bikes.

Ethical and sustainable living is creeping into the curriculum more and more making children very aware of the pressures on our planet. Are you, your children or your pupils engaged in such an ethical project? The awards are offering youngsters a chance of winning £6000 to help fund their project.

Not only will the award honour the Young Green Champion, but teachers, parents or Youth Group Leaders also have the chance to be recognised. By offering encouragement and support to their Champions to enter, the nominator could win a three night stay in The Coppice Woodland in Hertfordshire.

Kids have fantastic imaginations making their ideas original and we should encourage them as much as possible. This award is certainly one to watch. I am slightly gutted I never got a chance to enter when I was a youngster.

Well Dressed

Teaming up with the FruGal Challenge this award is looking for someone who lives and breaths sustainable fashion and style. Sustainable fashion can be identified in many ways. Be you a vintage queen, a frequent swisher, an ethical label seeker, a home-made goddess, a made-do-and-mend fairy or a hand-me-down hunter you have the ability to put your ethics before you style yet still turn out the belle of the ball. Good on you.

Simply submit a picture in your favourite outfit along with the story behind it. You could officially be crowned the belle of the ball.

Get involved

Feeling inspired? The deadline for the Young Green Champion Award is 22 March so get your socks on kids and adults get your encouragement on! 

For a splash of inspiration I leave you with the young winners from 2012 while I have a rummage through my wardrobe for my best sustainable outfit. 

P.S. Tim Burgess is on the judging panel this year. How cool is that? 

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

What Are Friends For?

...Good birthday presents, right?

I arrived at my desk this morning to a yellow giffy bag with a feminine handwritten address I recognised, 'it's Emma,' I thought. My birthday being 4 days away I knew it was present time. Woooooooop.

My usual caffine essential, tea was to be put on hold as I tore the bag open to uncover a beautifully scarf wrapped (note the sustainable packaging) present.


Being quite the conscious consumer it's fabulous to receive a gift that truely fits my taste and (geeky) interests. Emma had skillfully selected a war time re-print of Make Do and Mend to satisfy my clothing care interest, Mini Eggs to satisfy my mid-work hunger pangs (and my work pals) and lippy to satisfy my...ego (?) or at least make me look good. Lets not forget the vintage scarf that wrapped the contents. Good works Ems, I love it all.

Below are some snaps from the Make Do and Mend booklet. I particularly like point 3 in the first photo. This really does make a difference. My brother still chooses to ignore me.