2014 was the year that I challenged myself to go without buying any new RTW clothing. I set rules and parameters to make it do-able,but I still wasn’t sure I’d be able to stick to it. I’d never exactly been a shopaholic, but I was susceptible to the siren call of a sale or a girls’ day out, and when I went I went large.
It was amazing to me how easy it was to stick to my rules. I bought myself new bras, some new underwear, tights, and two new pairs of shoes, all which were in my “allowable purchases” category (Sorry, I haven’t caught the bra sewing bug yet and I might never. My chest is, ahem, ample and needs a lot of support). I thrifted and went consignment shopping when I felt the “new things” itch. And I sewed the rest.
I fell off the blogging bandwagon early this year, so I’m not actually sure how many makes I completed, but I got much better this year at making things I’ll actually wear. Renfews and Plantains dotted my sewing landscape and permeated my wardrobe. I made leggings and skirts and sweatshirts. Some days I found that I was wearing an entirely me-made outfit without even trying to, and that felt pretty great.
I’m proud to say that I made it through the year relying on thrift and creativity to dress myself nicely and express my personality. I contributed the least I ever have to an industry that has always concerned me. That’s a good feeling to me– I believe in voting with your dollars whenever you can, and I’m proud of voting for the right things this year.
Will I go back to buying RTW this year? Yes. Yes, I will. When all is said and done, I love clothes and I like to dress nicely. However, I will be considering my purchases carefully and making every effort to buy from ethical companies who treat their workers fairly. I believe in supporting companies who are doing something right just as much as avoiding the ones who are doing something wrong. I want to invest in quality purchases and will continue to avoid fast fashion.
I will also keep sewing. I dreamed up a winter capsule wardrobe and I’ve been steadily ticking things off the list. This year, my goal is to use what I have. I have tons of patterns and yet I sew up the same few over and over. This year, my goal is to make up all the patterns I own, except for three (I’ve got some scary vintage coats and ballgowns in there and I believe in being realistic). I want to get better at fitting and sewing wovens, because right now I’ve got the quick & easy knits thing sort of down. I want to use up the beautiful fabrics I’ve been hoarding but am too afraid of ruining to use.
I also want to blog more, because I have a habit of starting blogs and abandoning them a few posts in and adults should stick to their projects! And I think I can do it. After all, I got through a year without Nordstrom and Zara and new leather jackets, and if I can do that, I can do anything.