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Sewing, Sustainability and Me, by Natalie (@crazy_little_homebird)

When I started dressmaking approximately two years ago a whole new world was opened up to me. The world of Dressmaking and all that goes with it. The lovely fabrics and exciting patterns, the array of Subscription boxes, the whole hype had me hooked from day one.

I soon joined the Instagram and You Tube Sewing Community and this is where I was introduced to the many fabric and pattern companies that are out there.

No one tells you that Fabric buying is actually a totally separate hobby and I was loving treating myself to all of the beautiful fabrics. However I have recently started to question my ‘fabric stash’. I had all of this beautiful fabric that I was buying faster than I could sew it up. I don’t have a lot of storage space, and so one day enough was enough. I set myself a goal at the start of the year that I was not going to buy any fabric unless absolutely necessary, and as of mid June I have kept to my word!

The only fabric purchases that I have made have been to make gifts for people. I am going to set myself some firm plans for my stash and work my way through what I have and then I can start buying beautiful fabric again. I also had a look at a fabric subscription that I had, where I acquired 2.5m of surprise fabric every month. I downgraded my subscription, so now acquire 1m every month instead. I love the treat of this subscription box, so didn’t want to give it up completely and I am now more aware of how I use this fabric. Some fabric I have, I know I will never use and so I have listed this in my Etsy shop so that I can earn money from this to put towards some fabric that I will use.

I have also discovered recently that a lot of my favourite fabric shops now sell their fabric in as little as 10cm increments which I think is fantastic. I will really plan my future garments so that I buy exactly the amount that I need as this won’t be as wasteful. It’s the wasteful part that gets to me if I’m being honest, so if I can buy GOTS certified fabric or a more sustainable fabric then I would go for that every time. There are so many fabric companies now that advertise themselves as being a sustainable company which I think is amazing and the way forward.

The other area of my sewing that concerned my were the amount of sewing patterns that I had collected. Social media has a great way of showing you all of the new and exciting projects that the Sewing Community is working on and it is hard not to get caught up in it. I must have at least thirty patterns that I have not even cut out, never mind sewn up! There are some great online pattern swap sites or why not have a pattern and fabric swap party with some like minded sewing friends.

Again like with my fabric I am going to go through both my patterns and my fabric and pair them up and use what I have before I even think of looking for more. This also includes not buying

Sewing Magazines just because the magazine has three free patterns included that will never be used.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the Sewing Community and Dressmaking and buying fabric, but I feel a lot more in control of my buying and sewing because I have evaluated what I have and what I need.

I want my sewing journey to be sustainable for me and therefore this will reflect on the environment.

Thank you so much for reading my blog.

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