Slow fashionistas!

new shoes 3
Last months challenge to myself and to anyone else who wanted to join me was to slow down fashion! Some brilliant people joined me in this and I want to say a big thank you to all of them and to tell you how they helped to slow down fashion this month!  
My Zero Waste got mending and repeat wearing
Rachelle Strauss a.k.a. Mrs Green of My Zero Waste was quite up for the challenge in theory but wasn’t too sure about getting creative (read more here) . She started off by getting her other half a.k.a. Mr Green involved – you have to watch the video clip of what he did here! Then she had a couple of trips where she didn’t take any changes of clothes – apparently she still packed the kitchen sink, but no changes of clothes 🙂 (talked about on Twitter).  Thanks so much to Mr and Mrs Green for joining in!
Mommy Emu got very creative with her sewing machine
Emma from Mommy Emu was also up for the challenge, which she combined with another challenge to buy nothing new and blogged about it here and here (and probably in more blog posts as well – have a read through her great blog!). Emma made some amazing things including denim flip flops (as pictured above), a tie wallet, shirt pyjamas and jumper into a cardigan! I am so inspired by all Emma’s creativity this month!
Westywrites has slowed fashion down to a crawl for a whole year!
Westywrites has been on the slow fashion bandwagon for quite a while now and hasn’t bought any new clothes for herself since the beginning of the year.  She doesn’t plan to buy any for the rest of 2014 either! Think that is a step too far or easy peasy? Have a read of how it is going here!  Thanks loads for joining in Westy and keep up the good work!!!
Second-Hand Tales made three pledges and charted her progress throughout the month
Kathryn from Second-Hand Tales really embraced the challenge and decided to buy no new or secondhand clothes for the month, do some mending and have a go at being vaguely in fashion with the things she already has in her wardrobe – read the reasons why she wanted to take on the challenge and her original pledge here. As the month progressed she wrote weekly updates on how it was going (very organised, much more organised than I was!). In week 2 and week 3 Kathryn showed us what she had been wearing a lot of the time plus there was a bit of mending I think and in week 4 Kathryn was starting to feel the need to add more range to her wardrobe, but still hadn’t bought any clothes (read more here). I love the conclusions Kathryn comes to in her final post about her month of slow fashion and I couldn’t agree more with them (read more here)! Well done Kathryn – it was great to have you onboard and you did a great job!
Over on Twitter @sathlondonshona joined in with the challenge too.  Shona pledged to only wear 5 items of clothing throughout the month – that is hardcore!  On the 28th June (i.e. a couple of days ago) Shona tweeted this about her challenge: 
‘I’ve seen off two of my 5 items since we started. Jeans have gone through in two places & one of my tops also too holey. Also the trainers I’ve worn all month are finally wearing out. Jeans 1 year old worn most days. Tops 3 years old. Shoes 2. I’d say that’s some pretty good innings. #slowfashion’
I asked Shona if anyone commented on the fact she was wearing the same clothes all the time, but she said no-one did.  I also asked if she was upset about the clothes wearing out, but Shona said she wasn’t as she doesn’t buy a lot of clothes.
I’m so impressed with this – although I have considered it, I’m not sure I could stick to as small a wardrobe as Shona did for a whole month!

Nancy from Mumra was instrumental in inspiring this month of slowing down fashion and wrote about her very talented mother-in-laws slow fashion triumphs here. If it wasn’t for Nancy, I would never have thought about making a dungarees dress!! So thanks for the inspiration and thanks for joining in Nancy!

Sustainable gift wrap course

What I got up to

At the beginning of the month, I got creative with some curtain edging (read more here) and for the Observer Ethical Awards (read more here) I decided that I had to make myself a dungarees dress as my attempt to be in fashion using things I already owned (really not sure if dungarees dresses actually are in fashion or not, but I quite like the dress). I’m quite tempted to make myself some of those denim flip flops to match if I get a chance!  I wasn’t planning on doing much more than that though as I didn’t have much time but towards the end of the month I wore the same dress for around 7 days in a row (not pictured). No-one commented or seemed to notice at all!  I also haven’t bought any new clothes for several months (since last November – read more here), having been mending things when they have broken and have been doing a bit of clothes swapping too.

What I learned from a month of slow fashion!

  • Some people find not buying new clothes easy – I like it because I simply can’t be bothered to shop.
  • A limited wardrobe makes getting up in the morning quicker and can mean you get to wear your favourite clothes over and over and over again!
  • Clothes wear out when worn repeatedly.  I didn’t want to wear the same clothes too much as I didn’t want to wear them out and have another mending job on my hands!
  • No-one noticed when I wore the same dress for days on end and no-one noticed when Shona limited her wardrobe to 5 items for a month.
  • I was able to emulate one of the latest fashions with stuff I already owned – it did involve cutting and sewing though, which may not be for everyone
  • I should have included clothes swapping in the challenge, as I think it is a great way to declutter and get new to you clothes without any shopping involved! 
What I want to know!

Please, please, please anyone who joined in (or didn’t) please can you answer a few questions for me below:
  • If you joined in with the challenge how did you find it? 
  • What did you learn from it?  
  • Did you tell other people what you were doing?
  • What did other people say to you about what you did (if anything)?
  • Would you do it again (same time next year???)
  • If you didn’t join in with the challenge, is there a slow fashion challenge that would work for you? 
If I have missed any vital information from this blog post please let me know (I think I have covered everyone but am writing in a rush, so apologies if I have missed anything or anyone!).
Thanks so much to everyone who joined in, read about the challenge, talked about, tweeted about, Facebooked about or shared information about the challenge in any way. I had a great time reading about what you were all up to and felt really inspired by you all!
I am currently undertaking a Year of Eco Challenges . If you have a moment I would really appreciate it if you would consider sponsoring me with an action (no money involved) on my DoNation page. Also if you liked this post please click like on Facebook and follow on Twitter – thanks so much!


  1. Thanks for inspiring us with this challenge. V jealous of Mummy Emu's denim flip flops -wish I'd thought of that instead of suffering with smelly trainers because I couldn't buy any sandals!

  2. Zoe

    Thanks for taking the challenge Kathryn, sorry about the smelly trainers! I really like those flip flops too!

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