the home arts,  thrifting adventures

Mindful Money: Slow Fashion

I’ve been having a sort of ongoing conversation about Slow Fashion over on Instagram lately. There is a part of me that has always loved the ‘hunt’ of finding clothes for a few dollars on the clearance racks or at Goodwill, but lately, I’ve begun to feel uncomfortable with even that. My dear friend Tonia has been talking to me about the ideas of slow fashion and mending for years but it didn’t really start to click until this last year. Perhaps it is a function of growing older and growing comfortable in one’s skin- I know pretty well what my style is, what clothes flatter my figure, what colors I love. My closet has grown to reflect this paradigm shift. Imagine my discouragement when I realized that quite a few pieces have become damaged this last year when I did my bi-annual closet cleaning!

I know that in past, I probably would have given up most of the clothing for lost and consigned them to the rag basket. Thanks to great IG accounts like Katrina Rodabaugh and Elise Joy, I felt much more confident about the needed repairs. They both have wonderful walk-throughs and tutorials in their IG Highlights- worth a look if you are getting started on a similar endeavor!

We had a rather…erm…eventful weekend, and I had a lot of quiet time on my hands on Sunday afternoon. I was able to repair six pieces of clothing yesterday afternoon, and one more this morning. I still have two pieces that need more major reconstructive/thinking work, so I’ll have to save them for another quiet moment. I have about six pieces of knit clothing that have either been damaged in the dryer or might (!) be moths, and I am going to use some of Katrina’s great visible mending ideas to fix/refashion those pieces a little at a time. They will probably make nice handwork while I listen to lessons from the children this fall.

More than anything I am very grateful to know that this is yet another area of spending needlessly (heedlessly?) that I can step out of, saving both the planet, people’s livelihoods, and my pocket book.

Here’s some of the projects, below, from my Instagram Highlights, with notes on each repair.



  • Emily

    I love this. I wish I could do this! For example, how do you fix a sweater? I knit, so I should know, but I am flabbergasted. 🙂 I can fix fallen hems and things like that, because I can do simple sewing, but……

    • Joy

      Katrina’s account is really helpful for repairs like this, because it’s essentially the same idea as jeans with holes in them. When I repaired my sweater, I looked at the warp and weft and took my thread through the next ‘whole’ row where the warp and weft were intact on both sides, essentially restoring the missing weft that had caused the hole in the first place. I think if you had a rather large hole you would have to contact a talented knitter, but for smaller holes, this is essentially the technique. Jeans get holes in them for the same reason- the weft wears out, breaks, leaving a hole. If you catch it then and repair it, you won’t have to ‘patch’ it with another piece of denim.

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