One year Blogaversary!

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Happy New Year! It’s been one year since I clicked ‘Publish’ on this, my little corner of the internet and I have lots of thoughts on how that year has gone. I won’t go into the epic saga of my not succeeding to move house in 2018, instead I want to look at my sewing/sustainability goals and take a hard look at how those went.

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Trying out Cupro fabric for the first time this year

I started off the year talking about my sustainable goals in this blog post. It was basically split into three sections:

  1. Sustainable Fabrics
  2. Zero Waste
  3. Don’t mass Produce

Let’s look at each of these in turn. Firstly, ‘Sustainable Fabrics’ – I largely have switched to working with fabrics that I am ethically happier to use. I try and select organic fabrics where I can afford them. I have given Cupro and Tencel a try which I am pleased about as it was part of my goal to try more ‘ethical’ fibres that are new to me. The main change I have made is (due to the increasingly concerning rise of microplastics) I have not sewn with any any Polyester or Acrylic fabrics at all in 2018. Of course, there are problems with any fabric and I highly recommend checking out Time to Sew’s blog as Kate has done some excellent research into various fabric production processes for us to educate ourselves.

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Top made with Tencel scraps leftover from the fashion industry

‘Zero Waste’ is definitely the goal that fared the worst as the year went on, at the beginning of 2018 I made lot’s of scrapbusting projects such as these slippers and this clutch bag, and I even used tiny scraps and trimmings to stuff these tailor’s hams (which were themselves made from scraps). But as I got more stressed with the house move and I got more opportunities to blog for businesses that approached me, my sewing time became more monopolised and was not as ethical or environmentally conscious. This is totally on me and I am making it a 2019 goal of mine to make at least one scrap busting project a month to try and keep those scraps down!

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Tailor’s Ham made from scraps and stuffed with scraps

Finally the ‘Don’t mass Produce’ was also a bit of a flop. I made almost exactly the same amount of different items in 2018 as I did in 2017 (around 50! items each year!) BUT the main difference was in 2017 I made a lot more for my family, so my wardrobe grew more this year! I definitely did more slow sewing and produced more garments that are well made and should definitely stand the test of time, I am particularly proud of the finish on my Collins Top and my Morris Blazer. More of that this year for sure!

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The insides of my Morris Blazer that I sewed slowly and with attention to detail

I definitely want to revisit the goal of ‘not mass producing’ this year and I am planning to start the year with a fabric buying ban. With the exception of my Minerva Crafts makes, I plan on sticking to what’s in my stash and trying to sew slower and curate a more mindful wardrobe. I would like to be nowhere near having made 50 things this year, more like half that number would be preferable!

I think overall I didn’t succeed at any of these goals and I saw a definite trend of my good intentions being more successful at the beginning of the year than at the end of it. I have definitely been better at making more sustainable choices in 2018 than ever before so perhaps I shouldn’t say I FAILED but I definitely wasn’t as angelic as my new year’s resolutions last year promised I would be.

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This dress was made from vintage fabric I found in a charity shop

I thought long and hard about whether to change the name of my blog at the beginning of this year, accept that I have not proven myself to be a sewing eco-warrior and leave the sustainable sewing blogging to others more ethical than myself. But I have decided to keep it the same, partly so as not to confuse people and partly because this is my journey towards more sustainable sewing and I am not perfect, I am human and every choice I make for a better world is a positive change. So I hope you will stick around as I try to improve more on what I achieved last year as I definitely think I can do better!

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This top was made from 100% Organic cotton interlock

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