#FashionRevolution Fix it! workshop + easy fixes

My Fashion Revolution week fortnight this year consists of two events: an experimental small-scale fix workshop and the swap Nº6. You are still on time to put the swap in your agenda (and you already know the drill) but the fix workshop was something new.

Stemming from my own limited skills in fixing and mending, seeing it as a generational problem mostly (hi, fast fashion, bye, upkeep skills!) and knowing that practice makes perfect, I simply announced a Saturday afternoon when up to ten people could come together at the back of our Ateneu and try to fix their garments. It wasn’t a course and there were 0 powerpoint presentations. The setup included wine, tea, cake, and an opportunity to show your holes and unraveled seams to others, get some input on how to fix in and give it a go.

I was very happy to have my favorite social-sciences-person-turned-textiles-person Julie to host the workshop with me. Her knowledge of materials and dyes and passion for creative fixing (+ she introduced the rest of us to the notion of sashiko and with India Flint!) did so much to ground and structure my enthusiasm. At the end it felt like a little tea party in a parallel dimension enjoying the sorority and fixing the world one stitch at the time.

The concept was to bring only simple (we are just starting here, you know) manually (not to hassle with sewing machines) fixables, and the list was pretty much the expected. Here you have the issues we came across and suggestions what to do about them; these are a mix of the very basics and a bit advanced that we didn’t tackle this time but there were questions about the possibility of doing it:

Unraveled seams: 1, 2, 3.

Holes in jersey: 1, 2.

Holes in socks: 1, 2.

The typical jeans inseam problem: 1, 2, 3.

Putting in bra-strap fixers: 1.

Making a slit: 1, 2.

Hemming jeans: 1, 2.

Changing the shape of a pair of jeans: 1.

And to dabble just a bit into creative fixing, here you have FashRev suggestions to embroider, put patches or pom-poms on your garments to hide stains or rips or just to refresh them.

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The take-away message? Almost all garments are fixable, just google it! The internets are full of kind people showing how to fix anything. Especially if you let go of the idea of returning the garment to its initial state and think about fixing as giving it a loving upgrade instead, the possibilities are endless. And I have a feeling that this won’t be our last fixing event, so stay tuned.

Have you fixed anything recently? Do you aim for perfection, for creative expression or for just getting it done?

Luīze

3 Comments

  1. I think I learned the basics of sewing when I was 6 (my grandmother thought it was mandatory for a future wife to sew).
    But is a skill I always use(90% of my jeans are too long when bought, so I do the fix-up, dresses for my dolls when I was 10-14, socks).
    I bought also tear mender glue…I have to watch some youtube videos, because I seem to not use it correctly.So the last time, what I did, was to patch a what t-shirt with blue thread, trying a design of half a sun.This weekend I have to repair another t-shirt, so I’ll see what model to use.So at the moment I’m going for creative expression.
    And I’m also thinking/negotiating buying some pens to write on leather (I’m thinking of fixing leather bags and shoes when they have stains on them). But this still a thought.

    • Hi, Dori! Great, you are miles ahead the curve. And it’s always great when a skill seen as mandatory and maybe not very exciting can be turned into creative expression! Do you use Instagram or any other place to showcase your fixes?

  2. I do not have an Instagram account(I try to limit my time on the phone/computer) and my toddler decides most of the time what I do in my free time.But if I ever have pieces to show, I’ll create an account.
    Glad to see other people’s work (mine is not so impressive)

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