Monday, November 28, 2011

Stylish on a shoestring

Austerity is the new black (I didn't come up with that). Our global economy is fragile, purse strings need to be tightened. We have to stop being spenders and become savers.

My generation will have a particularly hard time with this. We have an insatiable appetite for electronics, shoes, vacations, home decor. And worse, we feel entitled to owning these things. We have no idea how to distinguish between wants and needs. In fact, we think that if we want something, we need it. 

I love clothes, I love fashion, but I also love being financially responsible and I go to lengths to avoid consumer debt. So where does this leave me and this blog? How can I express my love of fashion while not promoting and engaging in rampant consumerism?

Well, I try to be discriminating, industrious, and clever. I focus buying what Puddle needs not what I want, making smart purchasing decisions (ie. cloth diapers, quality vs. quantity), accepting all offers of second-hand clothing, and upcycling my old clothes into new ones for her all the while not compromising Puddle's style (er, my style for Puddle). I find this fairly easy, even the second-hand stuff. If I receive second-hand clothes I don't like, I simple pass them along.

But what I don't find easy is being economical when it comes to making clothes for Puddle. Fabric isn't cheap and it's what I love most about fashion and sewing. A beautiful piece of fabric can transform a simple pattern. And I find the hunt for beautiful fabric exhilarating.

So my most recent intention is to try to buy fabric from places like Our Social Fabric (a fabric recycling initiative), to attend fabric exchanges, and to accept offers of free fabric. Kate, I'm free when you are to rifle through that garbage bag of old fabric you mentioned.

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