We've all been told to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. But there's also a fourth R-- Repair. And while it may not be in the common phrase we all know, it's definitely not for lack of importance. Each year 13 million tons of textiles are thrown away or burned each year. It's estimated that each American throws away 81 pounds of clothes per year! One of the best ways we can reduce that number is to repair clothing before resorting to throwing it away.
I'm definitely no professional when it comes to repairing *anything* but last weekend I was trying on my clothes to re-home everything that didn't fit/doesn't get worn enough. To accomplish this task I spent some time trying on every piece of clothing that I owned. Halfway through this cardio exercise I was rushing and took off this dress that I intended to keep improperly and a small piece of fabric in the back broke off, releasing the metal decoration as well. Here's a picture of the damage.
Now instead of throwing this dress away, I wanted to try my hand at repairing it first. Especially because I felt this would be a relatively easy task to pull off with zero sewing skills. And what better way to celebrate Earth Month than starting it out with saving a piece of clothing from the landfill!
Even though I have no sewing skills I do have a small sewing kit of needles and one spool of blue thread (thanks Covid). I figured I could easily disguise the blue thread too since I could sew this under the dress fabric.
The repair was just as simple as I thought. I initially dreaded taking the time to do this because I felt it would be a pain and I actually put it off for a few weeks. In the end I decided to tackle this dress-saving-operation while I was watching TV and it only took me 5 minutes from start to finish. It almost made me embarrassed that I put it off so long seeing how easy it was and how well it worked. I now have a great dress that I love and already had and I don't need to go buy a new one- inevitably restarting the linear economy!
Have you put off repairing anything in your home? Let this be your inspiration to tackle the task!
Join me as I document my journey to becoming zero-waste through this blog as a resource to others.