The Year of the Fashion Fast

21/12/2018 · 2 comments

in Craft,Crochet,Fashion Fast,Knitting

fashion-fast-emma-varnam

This time last year I made the rash decision that my New Year’s resolution would be; buy no new clothes, a fashion fast. One year on, twelve tempting months, how have I got on? Well, I’m going to admit, I really surprised myself. My wardrobe is still bulging but has very few additions. It has been a wonderful experiment and discipline.

The most rewarding aspect of this self-imposed denial has been the lessons I have learnt about myself. Things already knew but have come into sharp focus.

fashion-fast-emma-varnam

Firstly, let’s get the whinge out of the way. A few of my friends have chided my efforts. Either they don’t enjoy clothes shopping or indeed don’t have any interest in fashion. Their view right from the off has been, ‘I can’t see what the fuss is about, it’s so easy… who likes clothes shopping anyway…everyone knows buying fast fashion is wrong…’ Fine I get that. If clothes or fashion are not interesting to you, my little resolution is no ‘biggie’. But then I could quite easily give up drinking tea for a year. I really dislike it so would be no problem.

The challenge was personal – failure or success was in my gift. It was my choice of self-discovery and others will have their own personal challenge. Each to their own. The real trick has been to sustain the resolution for twelve months as opposed to a mid-February abandonment of resolve. That my friends is when it hurts.

breton-tops-emma-varnam

Others friends could really feel my pain. They understood that I would be making decision not to cruise the shops to see what was new. They got the heartbreak of knowing, ‘that dress would be perfect for a party’ but knowing that the season would come and go and the opportunity to purchase it would pass me by. Some people have actually felt quite sorry for me, which is touching and I have received a 2 or 3 items as gifts or hand-me-downs. I have to be honest in each case I was pathetically grateful.

So what have I learned?

Cold turkey is obviously the best discipline for me – Complete denial with a hard a fast rule. Then there is no mission creep.

I like blue and white stripes…(Obviously)

If you want to avoid buying something stay away from the shops, unsubscribe to the shop newsletters and avoid fashion parties etc.

I have far too many things in my wardrobe

Denial can spark creativity

fashion-fast-emma-varnam

The last point is perhaps the most significant bonus of this year. When I was younger I used to make loads of my own clothes. Time and lack of skill prevented me from making more as I have got older. But the self-imposed fashion fast encouraged me to knit or crochet new items to mix up the changes. I’ve made two cardigans, two tank tops, 2 cowls, a shawl, 1 jumper and countless socks. All have been worn and I have enjoyed the challenge of solving a creative problem.

My lastest make is a total triumph. A crochet version of the Cassie Tank Top using Stylecraft Special DK in Navy. I have worn it twice already this week and I adore it.

fashtion-fast-emma-varnam

When bored by my choice in-front of the wardrobe I have found solace in accessories. On many occasions scarves and necklaces have come to my rescue to liven up a drab outfit.

When January arrives, will I go on a huge shopping rampage? Honestly I don’t think I will. There are a couple of items I really need to renew. Navy and Black trousers for work. I could do with another smart jacket for work and my white shirts are looking on the edge of grey. My most favourite blue and white breton top could do with a refresh. However I think that this year has significantly altered my habits. My sense of what suits me is more defined. I will aim to avoid rash and impulsive fashion mistakes and I feel more informed about ethical fashion and how the production of our clothes effects the most vulnerable and is eking plastics into our water system. Basically I think my fashion fast has made me a fashion grown-up.

Would I suggest you have a fashion fast in 2019? Well yes if want to save a few quid, discover which clothes you really wear and you will enjoy the creativity of shopping your wardrobe. But for now I am planning a big clear-out…anyone want a stripey top?

Previous post:

Next post: