I have a favourite pair of work trousers for the summer. They're light, quick to dry, mud coloured and above all of this, mysteriously only a size 8 and big! (This shouldn't be a consideration, but when you spend your life dressed in wellies with odds and sods of vegetation stuck in your hair, ingrained fingers and mucky fingernails, the positive affirmations of a clothes label that reminds you that at least you're holding the muffin tops at bay is generally a thing to be celebrated!)
My trousers are thoroughly worn. Almost every seam is fraying and the knees had got so thin that I had already patched them with hard wearing demin a few months ago. But yesterday, the unthinkable occurred and they finally gave way in spectacular two-tear, leg falling off fashion.
I am a fan of patching - perhaps because it allows for a little creativity - and I have my own personal challenge going on with these trousers, to keep them going as long as I possibly can. How long can a heavily used item of clothing last? I have t-shirts that are 30 years old, but most of my clothes are discarded before they're through, and I find this a little shameful, that I am flippant and whimsical enough, too governed by trends and fashions, to really put my ethical beliefs into practice. I think these have been on the go around 7 years now, and they don't half get hammered!
So after yesterday, I knuckled down and resolved to repair them yet again. And as patching is not the easiest of sewing jobs and yet is the one most able to breathe life into favourite items, I thought I'd share the method. My method, others may have different and indeed better, but this works for me.
(A note about wonky bits: if you've ever made your own clothes, or attempted to deconstruct an item of clothing, you'll know that there are all sorts of nips and tucks used to make something flat - fabric - go round something bendy - a body. Often the bits that wear are the most awkward - between the knees or thighs, kneecaps and elbows. I find this method works especially well where the worn part can be flattened, even if that means patching across a seam, but I have found that in some instances, patching (carefully!) whilst the item is being worn can be helpful! The important point is to make adequate time, don't rush and don't eliminate stages such as ironing, tacking and pinning in the hope of a quick fix. It's much better to be methodical and far, far less frustrating!)
So there you have it - no excuses, get patching!
Treading Lightly is simple living, within your means and the means of the planet, and making a minimal impact on the Earth. Find out more here about Catherine, of Barefoot Solutions, does this from day to day.