Wednesday, 22 April 2015

#sewsolidarity #whomademyclothes #fashrev

I’ll be honest, two years ago when I heard on the news that the Rana Plaza Factory in Bangladesh had collapsed I thought “that’s sad” as I often do with disasters reported on the news that are so far away. It wasn’t until recently after reading this blogpost by English Girl at Home that I started thinking about who makes the clothes I buy, mostly, for my two children and occasionally for myself as the majority of items in my wardrobe are home sewn.


My kids have grown up wearing lots of H&M clothes, mostly because I like them, but also because they are within our budget. It's only since I started sewing my own clothes that I have come to appreciate the amount time, care and attention needed to produce a garment and that to sell a garment so cheaply must mean that the person who made it must get paid very little for the work they have done.


So, thanks to an Instagram post about #sewsolidarity, Traid’s challenge to home sewers to raise awareness for the anniversary of the Rana Plaza disaster, my awareness of the topic has increased and my eyes have been opened reading about the conditions in which our clothes are made. One I found particulary interesting was this video by on suicide rates amongst cotton farmers. It would be easy to continue ignoring these stories and not think about where some high street clothes come from but I am glad that my eyes have been opened and I now think about “who made the clothes I buy for myself and my children?” and I have made a little pledge to myself, to be more mindful when shopping, to research where the clothes are made and continue to educate myself about who makes my clothes.


In memory of those that died in the Rana Plaza Collapse and to help raise awareness of the conditions in garment factories that produce clothes for the UK high street I am taking part in two awareness challenges.


First is Traid’s #sewsolidarity. Traid are asking home sewists to re-purpose a garment purchased from one of the shops who used the Rana Plaza factory to extend the garment’s life. I am re-fashioning two H&M garments from my son’s wardrobe that no-longer fit him, a plaid shirt and long sleeve T-shirt, into a dress for my daughter. If you would like to join in with the challenge, more details can be found here.


Here are the before and after pictures...





The second challenge is Fashion Revolution’s #whomademyclothes On Friday 24th April 2015. You take a selfie wearing an item of clothing inside out, post the photo on social media, tag the brand and ask the question #whomademyclothes.


There are lots of events on around the world, I’m hoping to pop along to my local one being hosted by Fashion Revolution Brighton at the MyHotel bar at 6pm on Friday April 24th. Details are on their Facebook page.

Have you ever thought about who make’s your clothes before? If not I'd check out Fashion Revolution Brighton and take a look at who makes your clothes. It’s interesting reading, eye opening, thought provoking and it certainly made me think about who make’s my clothes.
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