We all know that it’s important to cut down on buying clothes from fast fashion brands. These clothes are made by underpaid employees, aren’t usually crafted to endure multiple seasons, and tend to use fabrics and techniques that have a negative impact on the planet. It’s a no-brainer — we need to find some alternative solutions that meet our clothing needs!

Aside from investing in higher quality clothing that’s made from sustainable materials and preferably produced by local, independent craftspeople, we can also learn to sew.

Here are a few reasons why getting your machine, needles, and thread out of the sewing cabinet can help to reduce fast fashion, in one way or another…

Mending instead of throwing away

First up, knowing how to sew allows you to mend your garments yourself. Instead of throwing away clothes with small rips or missing buttons, you can extend their life with a few stitches. You don’t need to be a sewing pro to fix your worn and torn clothes. Just brush up on the basics of using a needle and thread. It can be helpful to read up on techniques and terms like darning and get practising.

Even slightly messy stitching on a wearable dress is better than a dress that will never be worn again. If you have friend who’s a whizz at mending their clothes, ask them to teach you some tricks of the trade.

Making alterations

One step up from mending your clothes is making alterations. Perhaps you bought a top in an online sale (those fast fashion reductions can be tempting), but it doesn’t actually fit you. Instead of chucking your new purchase or burying it in the wardrobe, you could alter it to fit you a lot better.

It’s helpful to have a sewing machine, sewing machine table, and some clear space to get your alterations just right. You still don’t need to be a master at sewing to make alterations, but get familiar with measuring your body, translating this onto your clothes, and using your sewing machine to make neat seams and hems.

Take a look at our guide to simple clothing alterations for a starting point.

Making your own clothes

If you want to say goodbye to fast fashion forever, you could switch to making your own clothes. Perhaps making every single piece of new clothing yourself is a little ambitious — but you could spend some time crafting a few high-quality, perfectly-fitting staples.

Why not start with some simple projects, like a basic top or casual smock dress? Then you can work your way up to more elaborate undertakings. You could even use old clothes or pieces of scrap material for your new creations, making them low or zero waste.

Making gifts for others

If you frequently purchase gifts from fast fashion shops, learning to sew will allow you to make some handmade items instead. Your friends and family will adore that you created your own present for them, especially when they hear that it’s with the aim to be more environmentally-friendly.

Get started with RMF Sewing Furniture

Are you looking for sturdy, high-quality sewing tables in the UK? A sewing table is a great way to create a clear space for your upcycling and dressmaking projects. It can also be helpful to invest in a handy sewing storage cabinet to keep all your fabrics, threads, and equipment organised.

At RMF, we’ve been providing sewing storage and equipment to our customers for over 50 years. Our sewing machine desks, foldaway sewing cabinets and other furniture pieces are perfect for creating an inspirational crafting space. Browse our products and get in touch if you have any questions.