Crochet = Personalized Slow Fashion
A pile of Regan's handmade sweaters, which he crocheted as slow fashion.
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Hello crocheters out there! This is Regan taking over for a hot second to discuss the benefits of slow fashion and crocheting your own wardrobe. Crochet is slow fashion! After crocheting several garments, I’m sharing the positives of doing so, and why I support making your own fashion.

I will admit that up until recently I didn’t even know what fast fashion meant.

Text with the definition of Fast Fashion: "An approach to the design, creation, and marketing of clothing fashions that emphasizes making fashion trends quickly and cheaply available to consumers."
-Merriam Webster
The definition of Fast Fashion

My recent dive into the fiber world has opened a new understanding of the clothing market. I also think as I’ve gotten older I’ve been able to appreciate fashion more and the work that goes into it, additionally the realization of what fast fashion is and the waste it creates.

Fast fashion exists because of accessibility and affordability, and I don’t want to downplay that reality for some people. Being able to create your own clothes is time consuming and requires learning a skill to do so. But I think if you have that time and ability, investing in your own personal slow fashion is great.

You may also enjoy: WeCrochet Podcast – Slow Living with Crochet

Regan's slow fashion crocheted Alpine Alpaca Sweater

I aspire to one day be able to make all my clothes, but I haven’t dipped into the sewing world quite yet. However, I have been able to make several crocheted garments now and I want to talk about the positives I’ve experienced, and the few reasons why I support making your own fashion:

  • Customizability
  • Less waste
  • Self-gratification

Let’s go over these!

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Slow Fashion = CUSTOMIZABILITY:

Regan wearing a crocheted sweater of his own design, demonstrating slow fashion.

I would think most people have had the experience of clothing shopping only to find that nothing appeals to you, nothing fits right, or the fabric content isn’t something you like. This is pretty common in fast fashion as the purpose is to sell to the most societal standard customer. That means if you stray from the “norm” you will probably have a harder time finding something up your alley.

Here’s where making your own fashion comes in. Imagine this! You get to choose the color, the fiber, and you can make it exactly your size. On top of that, you have the ability to go outside of what “normal” clothing may look like. Instead of just t-shirts and sweaters, maybe we have some type of asymmetrical garment, or an especially chunky cardigan because why not? Crochet allows for a very wide range of fashion statements and expressions.

LESS WASTE:

Regan wearing a handmade sweater. Slow fashion is participating in creating your own wardrobe, whether through sewing, crocheting, knitting, or other methods.

As mentioned above, fast fashion is very wasteful. It promotes the idea of making more than necessary and also pushing for constant “newness”. Fast fashion doesn’t last, trends come and go, and since it’s designed to constantly be changing the quality of a lot of clothes suffer. So instead of being able to invest in a shirt to have around for years to come, it most likely will end up in the trash within the year.

Making your own clothes usually means you’re taking your time with it and being much more precise and detail oriented. This will usually result in a garment that is better made and will last much longer. And because you’re only making what you need there’s not a lot of waste compared to mass producing something that will be thrown out in the end.

I do want to mention though, since I don’t want to just smack fast fashion around. A lot does come down to personal care and correctly washing your clothes. That’s a whole other topic, but being able to take care of your clothes will also extend the lifetime.

Slow Fashion = SELF-GRATIFICATION:

Regan wearing a handmade sweater

If nothing else convinces you, then there’s at least the satisfaction of making something yourself. After I finished a couple of my first crochet sweaters I was almost on a high of satisfaction. It kind of blew my mind, I was holding and wearing something that I made. That is crazy! And it’s mine, my colors, my size, my fit.

I especially love the final moments of bringing the garment to life. When I make all the pieces it can be kind of difficult to imagine what it’s going to look like. But as soon as I start connecting them together, it’s like sprinting that last 100 meters in a race.

And even though this post has been about fashion, it doesn’t just stop there. People are constantly making bags, purses, blankets, plant holders, anything you can think of! The list goes on and on of what’s possible. The concept of slow fashion doesn’t just have to stop at fashion!

I’m by no means an expert (quite the opposite really), this was more just my thoughts on current habits I have and wanting to open the discussion!

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What are your thoughts on fast fashion vs. slow fashion? Do you aspire to create any of your own garments (via crochet, or any other way?). Let’s chat about it in the comments!


1 comment

  1. Christiann / October 7, 2020 / Reply

    Amazing work Regan – especially since, from the podcast, I know you haven’t been crocheting for a long time.

    I love the idea of slow fashion with crochet. I have been crocheting for 6 years now and am finally making a sweater – I actually have 3 sweater/cardigan WIPs. I did finish a vest previously and a top this year.

    I do have so many hats, scarves, bags, and dishcloths already off the hook. I love sharing warm and customized hats with friends!

    Thanks for sharing your crochet work!

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