Homemade fashion 'shouldn't be disposable'

Crafter hopes for Sewing Bee boost

The current trend for fast fashions and a throwaway consumer culture contribute to huge amounts of clothing and fabric being disposed of every year.

But knitwear designer Sally-Ann Moffat believes that fashion should never be regarded as throwaway.

Speaking to Stuff.co.nz ahead of this weekend's Handmade Festival in Wellington, she discussed how to hold on to your clothing and transform it into something new.

"You can either upcyle or just think your clothes will come back in. They will and you will have an original piece which is far better than a copy," she revealed.

Ms Moffat explained how many designs can be given a modern twist, whether it is cutting boot-leg jeans down into skinny trousers or giving an old jacket a cropped look.

She went on to explain that add-ons can be a brilliant way of updating an item of clothing. This could be through fun new buttons, a creative knitted corsage or piped edging.

While many people might not be prepared to adapt their clothes, the stylist urged people to try new things and not to throw away unwanted items.

"I think we've lost confidence. We have a mindset that because we've paid for it and someone else has done it, it must be better. It's not true at all," she added.

The Handmade Festival will also feature many workshops from designers keen to share their skills. These include sewing, embroidery, cooking and knitting.

One of the instructors will be yarn shop owner Tash Barneveld who claims that once she has taught people to purl and plain knit they should be away.

She recommended indulging in "selfish knitting" as a relaxing and enjoyable pastime.

Ms Barneveld said: "People used to knit for gifts. Now they are knitting to relax in a productive way. It’s a process rather than a product, a stress release that has something awesome at the end of it.

"Now there are fantastic patterns by awesome designers rather than pattern companies, enabled by the internet."

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