Hi, guys!  Hope you’re all enjoying your Fridays (or Saturdays, if you live realllllllly far away from me)!

First things first, perhaps you’ve noticed already, but my ugly mug is featured over at Elena’s blog today!  Thanks, Elena!  She’s starting a regular feature interviewing folks participating in the Seamless Pledge– I’m really excited to hear about other people’s experiences with it, and I’ve enjoyed reading your blog posts about it (Gail just renewed her pledge, as did Julia a few months ago.)  I’ve been so amazed and excited to see the way that folks across the blogosphere have embraced the idea of dressing responsibly (and less disposably).

On that note, I wanted to mention a book that I’m reading right now, Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion by Elizabeth L. Cline*.  Is anyone else reading this?  I’m a little over halfway through, and I have to say that the facts in the book are pretty shocking.  Most of us in the sewing blog world are probably ahead of the curve when it comes to this topic, but I didn’t realize just how rapidly and alarmingly the garment industry in the U.S. declined (I’m sure this is the case in other countries, but I’m not familiar with the garment industry outside the U.S.).  The book lays out in no uncertain terms that our addiction to cheap, trendy clothing has greatly contributed to unemployment here in the States, not to mention a glut of trashed clothing piling up in landfills, artists and designers having their work ripped off with no consequences, and our closets and homes cluttered with shoddily-constructed items that won’t make it through the washing machine.

These facts are horrifying and sad, but I have to say that I feel encouraged to know that there are people out there (many of whom I could name!) who are choosing another way– choosing to recycle textiles, to refashion used clothing, to live with less, to mend rather than to throw away, to pay a fair price for clothing, to consume thoughtfully.  It’s a huge problem, and a complex one, but you know what?  We’re making a dent in the problem.  So thanks for choosing a different way!

What are your thoughts on this issue?  Have you read this book?  Any favorite tips or tutorials for reusing or refashioning?  I’m looking forward to trying out Zo’s idea for making tanks out of old t-shirts… you can download her pattern here!

*Note: I feel like I should mention, since we’re on a crunchy, responsible-consumption-type topic here, that although I usually link to books on Amazon, I order them from my local indie bookstore (WORD, in Greenpoint, Brooklyn).  Amazon usually has many more reviews than any other site, so that’s why I link to them.

Me-Made-May ’12: Day 2!

Happy 2nd day, everybody!  Hope you guys are enjoying this as much as I am!

shirt: me-made Renfrew top

jeans: Levi’s

shoes: Converse (’cause I’m so original)

location: right outside my apartment

pug: sold separately

This shirt is the me-made item that I wear the most– it’s just so comfy and easy to wear.  It’s a nice boring basic piece.  I’m not much of an accessorizer, and with this dramatic neckline, I can’t really wear a necklace, so my outfit is a little bland, but, oh well.

A few items of business:

A HUGE thank you to Maddie for passing along the Liebster award to me!  If you haven’t seen her blog yet, RUN, don’t walk, over there– it’s chock-full of jaw-dropping inspiration photos and some downright amazing tutorials!  I’ll be attempting to draft a bodice block this month using her tutorials.  Thanks, Maddie!

Next up– the Seamless Pledge.  How’s that going, guys?  I’m interested to hear your experiences.  Sadly, I had to break it last week– I had an unexpected work occasion that I needed to dress up a bit more for, so I broke down and bought a blazer and a buttondown (I’ve never owned a blazer before– silly, right?).  I’m a little bummed, but at the same time, the Seamless Pledge is (for me) about awareness and trying to make more responsible choices about buying clothes, not about being crippled when your schedule throws you a curveball.  I don’t have the chops (or the time) to tailor a jacket at this stage in my life, and thrifting options are difficult for that sort of thing, so I feel OK about buying a nice, basic blazer that will be in my wardrobe for many, many years.  Also, apparently Li’l Miss T-Shirt me Goodwilled all my plain-ish buttondowns!  Whoops.  Any thoughts or observations on your own Seamless experiences?