Sewing is an amazing hobby. Not only does it allow you to unleash your creative side, it also gives you the power to reduce your impact on the environment by adopting sustainable sewing practices.
It can be pretty confronting when you read statistics regarding the impact the fashion industry has on the environment. In fact, the industry contributes approximately 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions every year – exceeding both the aviation and shipping industries!
While you may not have the power to change the world, with the help of a trusty sewing machine, you can make a difference by living a more eco-friendly lifestyle. Learn how you can reduce your environmental impact with these three sustainable sewing tips.
Tip 1: Choose sustainable fabrics
Every second, one garbage truck of textiles is landfilled or incinerated. Imagine the amount of textile waste that is being disposed of – just in the time it takes you to scan this blog!
No need to worry yourself with things you can’t control though, there are small steps that you can take to reduce your impact on the planet. This includes being mindful of the fabrics that you use for your sewing projects.
Some ways you can put this into action include:
- Searching your local charity shops to find unique, second-hand fabrics
- Upcycling unexpected fabrics like tablecloths and sheets
- Checking Facebook Marketplace for second hand fabrics
- Consider using deadstock fabric
- If you want to buy new, consider using fabric that’s organic or made from sustainable fibres such as hemp
- Try to avoid fabrics like viscose and rayon where possible (consider an alternative like Ecovero Viscose)
Tip 2: Be Mindful about your projects
The acceleration of the trend cycle and increase in demand for affordable and accessible clothing has led to an industry where more than half of ‘fast fashion’ that is produced is disposed of in under a year.
We understand that there’s nothing you can do to stop all of those clothes from going to waste, but what you can do is try to reduce or eliminate your consumption of fast fashion. This is where your sewing super power comes in handy! When you take a sustainable sewing approach, this can allow you to engage in ‘slow fashion’ by being more thoughtful about the clothes you create, own and wear.
Some ways to add more ‘slow fashion’ into your sustainable sewing approach include:
- Instead of throwing out clothes that are damaged, mend them! That way, even if you no longer need them, you can donate them to your local charity shop.
- Spend some time considering if you will actually use or wear something before starting on the new project.
- Try to reduce your participation in trends if it means that you won’t like an item of clothing once it goes ‘out of style’.
- If you don’t need any new clothes, but still want to sew something, consider creating some items of clothing for your local women’s shelter or community centre.
- You can also embark on sewing projects that make your life more eco-friendly. For example, you could create some DIY food wraps or reusable snack bags, to reduce your reliance on single-use plastics.
Make use of your fabric scraps
On your journey to engage in more sustainable sewing, another way you can make an impact is to make use of your fabric scraps. There are a plethora of scrap busting projects you can do to use up your leftover fabric.
Taking a more Sustainable sewing approach
If you want to take a more sustainable sewing approach it’s important to focus on the things that you can control. Try not to get bogged down in the doom and gloom of the world and take pride in knowing how to sew. It’s a fun, creative hobby that allows you to express yourself – and – have a positive impact on the world around you.
Want to get into sewing to reduce your environmental impact? SINGER® has a great range of sewing machines available for sewists at all skill levels.