Fashion Revolution Week

Belper’s first Fashion Revolution event took place during Fashion Revolution Week 2019. The action happened in St Peter’s Church on Friday April 26th,  it was very well supported by people from Belper and beyond.The idea for the Fashion Revolution movement came from Carry Somers after the tragedy of the Rana Plaza disaster. On 24 April 2013, a factory building in Bangladesh collapsed killing 1,134 people and injuring 2500 more. Carry (who has a Fair Trade shop in Ashbourne) felt this was a tipping point and something needed to be done. She phoned Orsola de Castro, founder of up-cycling fashion label ‘From Somewhere‘. Orsola immediately said, ‘Yes we have got to do this.” The first fashion Revolution Day took place in 2014. Fashion Revolution Day has now become Fashion Revolution Week and this year took place from April 22 – 28.

It was encouraging to have at the event a young fashion designer from Derby, Leren Connor. Her company Bambis Den is an eclectic mix of forgotten treasures, festival attire, alternative clothing and accessories. Leren is an advocate for sustainable fashion, she sources charity shops and car boots for the best denim and materials to use in her collections and gives them a new lease of life. A clothes swap was organised by Shena Lawrence and her team. Shena runs a monthly clothes swap at Creartii Belper and the next one will be on May 22nd 2019 from 7.00-9.00pm. More details can be found at the bottom of this blog.
There was a Fabric Swap for all those who enjoy making or mending.

Bryony Roberts travelled  from the South West to lead a craft activist activity. Craft activism is slow activism which helps people to think about important issues while making something. In 2014 I started an ongoing banner about why things need to change in the fashion industry. The idea was that people thought about the issues and wrote or sewed something onto a fabric post it note. Last Friday more post it notes were embroidered and added to the banner.One of todays trends, currently referred to as Fast Fashion, is to wear clothing and then discard, either because it is cheap or you can easily buy something new because it gets damaged in some way. Two local ladies brought along their sewing machines. Marilyn’s was from the 1930s and she had information about making your own clothes. Pam’s was more modern and she was able to help with repairs and showed examples of how garments could be mended or altered to make something new.There were two workshop tables where those who attended could have a go at altering or creating something new from something old. Sue MacFarlane (owner of Sues Sustainables, a shop that sells sustainable options for your everyday needs) turned mens shirts into bags.Kim Kerry (who has a monthly stall on Belper Farmer’s market, selling wool and wool related items) brought along yarn and crochet hooks to give people a go and show how crochet can used to alter or mend clothing.There was space to have your photo taken holding a card which asked, Who Made My Clothes? The idea behind this is that you contact the brand who made the item and ask them if they know who made it, encouraging transparency in the Fashion Industry.And of course there was a cafe area with homemade cake and biscuits.For your information shown below are details about an event organised by Shena Lawrence at Creatii Art Studio.

Fashion Revolution Belper

Do you wear clothes? In that case please read the rest of this article. Our Member’s of Parliament say the Fashion Industry is a major source of the greenhouse gases that are overheating our planet. Discarded clothes are piling up in landfill sites and fibre fragments are flowing into the sea when clothes are washed. Find out more HERE.

On 24 April 2013, the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh collapsed. 1,138 people died and another 2,500 were injured, making it the fourth largest industrial disaster in history. That’s when Fashion Revolution was born. The idea for Fashion Revolution Day came from Carrie Somers whose Ashbourne shop Pachacuti sells Fair Trade hats.

Pachacuti Shop in Ashbourne Derbyshire.

Here is what Carrie says about the start of Fashion Revolution,

After the Rana Plaza disaster, everywhere I looked, there were newspaper articles calling for a more ethical fashion industry. All of us within ethical fashion circles wondered how we could channel the energy and momentum. The Rana Plaza catastrophe was a metaphorical call to arms. The idea for Fashion Revolution Day literally dropped into my head in the bath a few days after the 24th April. I could so easily have stayed soaking in my hot bath and ignored the idea, but it seemed like a good enough idea to act on.’

Fashion Revolution Day has now become Fashion Revolution Week and this year it is from April 22nd until April 28th. There are events happening all over the world with the aim of encouraging all of us to think about the clothes we buy and wear. Everyone wears clothes even if we don’t think of fashion as something that interests us on a daily basis and the clothes we wear are MADE by someone. People like a bargain but is our bargain at the expense of someone else’s well being.

I was horrified to discover the amount of water that it takes to make a cotton T-Shirt and also the pollution and environmental damage done by the growing of cotton. Is it better to buy one expensive organic cotton t-shirt rather than 6 cheap t-shirts?  Water needed for one T-Shirt

We are planning out first Fashion Revolution event in St Peter’s Church, Belper this year. The address is Church Lane, Belper, DE56 1EZ. This will take place on Friday April 26th from 7.00-9.00 pm.

There will be different activities to join in with including some Craft Activism. If you have not heard of this more information can be found here https://craftivist-collective.com  Craft can be a tool for gentle activism, while making something it gives you time to think about issues and changes that you can make. There will also be an opportunity to bring along clothes that you no longer love or wear to swop with others and a fabric swop. At the last clothes swop I went to organised by Shena at Creartii, Green Lane, Belper. I found a plain denim skirt that fitted me nicely. I enjoyed myself adding some embroidery to the front of the skirt.

Don’t worry if you are not into craft there will be a cafe and information about changes we can all make. Please come along and support because however much interest you take in clothes you do wear them.