As much as we all enjoy buying new clothes, we cannot ignore the fact that it's not the most sustainable practice. As we've discussed before, the fashion industry is one of the biggest contributors to pollution and waste, and it's time for us to take actionable steps to reduce our impact where we can. Learning how to sew, whether by hand or with a sewing machine, has taught me a lot about how to extend the life of my wardrobe, especially my favorite pieces that I would never part with. There are numerous techniques and ways you can repair your clothing, and in this blog post, I'll explain some of those. Sewing and repairing apparel may seem intimidating at first, but it’s easier than you think. Once you do it once, your worries will disappear. Here are some ways you can repair your clothes and reduce your impact on the environment.
One of the most obvious ways to repair clothes is by sewing them. If you have a small tear or hole in your clothes, you can quickly mend them by sewing. You don't need to be an expert seamstress to do this. You can start with simple stitches and work your way up to more complicated ones. There are plenty of resources available online that can help you learn how to sew. In addition, sewing allows you to add unique details to your clothes, whether that be using contrasting thread or stitching in a design. It is a way to preserve your garments while also adding your own touch.
Darning is a technique used to repair holes in fabric. It involves weaving a new piece of thread into the fabric, creating a new layer of fabric where the hole used to be. This technique works best for small holes in knitwear, such as socks or sweaters. You can use a darning mushroom or egg to make the process easier.
Patching is another great way to repair clothes. If you have a hole that's too big to sew or darn, you can cover it up with a patch. You can use fabric from an old garment or buy a patch kit from a craft store. Not only does patching cover up the hole, but it can also add a unique touch to your clothes.
Iron-on patches are a quick and easy way to cover up a hole or add some flair to your clothes. You can buy iron-on patches in a variety of designs and styles. All you have to do is place the patch on the garment, cover it with a cloth, and iron it on.
If your clothes are too long or too loose, you can hem them to fit better. Hemming involves folding the fabric over and sewing it in place. You can use this technique to shorten pants, shirts, skirts, or sleeves. This is a great way to give new life to clothes that are too big or too long. I always hem my thrift finds myself. Just make sure you pin and check lengths before you cut and sew, you can always take more length away, but can't add fabric back.
By repairing our clothes, we can reduce the amount of clothing waste that ends up in landfills. Not only is it better for the environment, but it can also save us money in the long run. When we take care of our clothes, they last longer, and we don't need to buy new ones as often. So next time you have a tear in your favorite shirt or your jeans are too long, try repairing them instead of throwing them away. You might be surprised at how easy it is and how much you can extend the life of your clothes.