Besides REFUSING disposable plastic, there are countless ways to reduce the waste that we produce. REPAIRING and REPURPOSING are both excellent ways of helping us get the most use out of our “stuff” before we “throw it away”. And so our next Dahab Defender is someone who does just that! Bronwyn Jones, owner of Peace Road Designs – Dahab, crafts some amazingly beautiful bags. But she also helps a lot of us REPAIR our clothes so we can wear them longer. Today, Bron has written about one of the more popular items she repairs – jeans. Keep reading to learn about her amazing efforts to lessen the amount of clothes sent to landfills.
“People should not consume without thought, buying up stuff all the time. Buy less and make it last; if you love something, wear it all the time.” Wise words from Vivienne Westwood, fashion designer.
Even better, don’t buy any clothes for a long time. This is not difficult if you live in Dahab! Instead, try repairing or altering your existing clothes. This is where I come in! I am passionate about keeping clothes out of the landfill and instead recycle, upcycle, repurpose …. or any term used these days to basically describe the practice of not throwing away your clothes.
Do you have a pair of jeans that have molded to your body over the years? You’ve just “broken them in”. They are the most comfortable piece of clothing in your wardrobe. They are most certainly showing signs of wear and tear but are irreplaceable. I bet there is a story behind the different stains, abrasions and scrapings.
Because we wear jeans almost every day (some of us do), they wear out fast. Jeans worn low, hanging from your hips or are tight fitting wear out at the crotch. The thick seams rub against each other, eventually breaking the fabric. Pre-treated and pre-washed jeans such as stone wash, enzyme wash, sandblasting and acid wash, shorten the lifespan compared to dry denim as these processes significantly damage and weaken the material.
However, extending the life of your favorite jeans is easy. I am a tailor, so know how to use a sewing machine. I have lost count of how many jeans I’ve repaired, some from a basic tear through to some very distinct designs. One of my favorite projects was modifying a capri-style jean into a funky patchwork jean. I have also made a few “jean monsters”.You can repair your own jeans with needle, thread and patches of fabric. I like to cut up old jeans that I’ve collected from local second-hand clothing shops or someone has passed on to me. I try to use a denim material close to the colour and quality of the original jean. I like the idea of cutting up old jeans, as this also keeps them out of the landfill.
I encourage you to be adventurous with your old jeans. Turn your favorite jeans into a personal work of art. You are only limited by your imagination. There are hundreds of ideas on pinterest.com for recycling, upcycling and repurposing denim.
Bron has REPAIRED a pair of denim pants and a pair of denim shorts for my husband. This was such a great relief as it is difficult to find clothes that fit him here in Dahab. Nadim will now be able to keep wearing these shorts and pants for several more years, inshallah. 🙂 Bron has also modified a dress (that I didn’t wear) into a lovely long skirt that I will wear often in Dahab’s summer heat. So, check your cupboards and take a look at some of the clothes in there that you don’t wear. Do they need repaired? Modified? Take them to Bron! Perhaps you simply don’t want them anymore. Pass them on to one of the second-hand shops for someone else to purchase or even to Bron who may be able to give a second life to the items.
A huge THANK YOU to Bronwyn for all her creative efforts in RECYCLING, REPAIRING, and REPURPOSING our clothes! Bron also has a passion for photography and shares some amazingly colorful images so be sure to follow her on one of the sites linked below:
Peace Road Designs – Dahab
Refuse ~ Reduce ~ Reuse ~ Recycle