Fashion Revolution Week happens every year in the week surrounding the 24th of April. The week marks the anniversary of the 2013 Rana Plaza collapse.
Rana Plaza, an eight-storey building in Dhaka, Bangladesh, housed a number of garment factories, employing around 5,000 people. The people in this building worked long hours manufacturing clothing for many of the biggest global fashion brands. The safety of the workers was low on the list of priorities, and it wasn't unusual to see large cracks appear overnight in the walls. Just before 9am on 24th April 2013, the building started to collapse suddenly, in less than 90 seconds it was all over.
Over 1,100 people died in the collapse and another 2,500 were injured, making it the fourth largest industrial disaster in history. This is when Fashion Revolution started.
Fashion Revolution Week promotes transparency in the garment industry by encouraging consumers to ask brands 'who made my clothes?' When Fashion Revolution Week started, it prompted many brands to admit that they did not know the whole of their supply chain. As consumers began to ask who made their clothes, garment workers across the world responded by saying 'I made your clothes'. Fashion Revolution Week has now become a global campaign, linking consumers to the people who make the items they buy. The intention is to make us all into conscious consumers who value the work that goes into making their clothes.
Here at Sew Creative, we try to live out the values of Fashion Revolution week in our day to day lives. By making your clothes, you can take control of the production and reduce your contribution to the global fashion industry. We teach people not only how to make their own clothes from scratch, but also how to mend and alter second-hand clothes to fit them perfectly. We also try to source fabrics from suppliers with transparency surrounding their manufacture and working conditions.
This week on the blog, we will be focussing on Fashion Revolution Week and it's theme of sustainability. We will be posting about making clothes that are built to last, mending your clothes and planning a wardrobe that you will actually wear.
As makers, we can strive for sustainability in our handmade wardrobes. Try using second hand fabric or recycling old bed linens into a new dress. If second had fabric isn't your vibe, how about ensuring that every scrap of fabric you have is used up? Once your project is cut out, save all of the scraps. These can be used for stuffing in cushions and soft toys that you can give away as gifts!
At Sew Creative we want to challenge you this week. With MeMadeMay on the horizon, try to start thinking about your handmade wardrobe. What's missing from it? Do you have shop bought garments that have never fitted? Do you have items, handmade or shop bought, that need repairing? Gather together the items that need fixing or altering. Identify the gaps in your wardrobe. With all of the spare time most of us have on our hands at the moment, it is a perfect opportunity to take stock of our clothing collections and evaluate how sustainable it is.
Wear something handmade, altered or mended this week and take a picture with the 'I Made my Clothes' poster (you can download it below). Tag us as Fashion Revolution Week.
Keep an eye out this week for our daily posts, all about mending, altering and planning your handmade garments.
Keep safe and Happy Sewing, The Sew Creative team. x