Charity / Fashion / Magazine / Vogue

Make do and Mend

Do you know how I know that we’re in the midst of a financial crisis? It’s not the slumping stock markets, the collapsing Euro or the negative equity faced by thousands who bought their homes at the wrong time… no. It’s Vogue magazine advocating the use of a ‘make do and mend’ mindset.

Even more perplexing is their support of this methodology whilst demonstrating their favoured ways to always “look your very best”. Yes people, thrifty is in Vogue. We believe that make do and mend harks back to a glamorous by gone era, and in some ways it does, but making do and mending was never in fashion like it is today. It was preferable to not have to repair things, but instead have enough money just to replace them.

Often when shopping in charity shops you can find things have a thread pulled here or there, or the hem line isn’t as secure as it once was. Perhaps the fabric has become a little frayed, as is natural when something is second hand. I fear that this dress has been featured rather a lot recently but it demonstrates my ‘make do and mend’ ethos quite nicely.

The Oasis black shift dress that I bought recently had a slight hole in it down the stitching at the side, and as it is already a snug size 8 I was concerned that it would burst fairly easily.

Stitching burst on the inside, leaving a hole on the outside

Now, I know that my threads and needles are in the box with my sewing machine, and that is right at the back of a pile of boxes, tremendously hard to reach, so I bought the following threads:

These invisible threads should cover me for a multitude of applications and they are very handy to carry with me in my handbag along with a needle set just in case anything should go wrong. It’s the nature of the beast with buying and living in second hand clothes, you have to deal with someone else’s wear and tear. Your clothes could burst open at any second! Leaving you completely naked in the middle of the street! Oh sorry, that’s just my recurring nightmare…

After some jiggery pokery it gets all stitched up with my plastic thread. But then. disaster strikes and I find that the hem line at the bottom has started to come unstitched too. It’s one of those seamless hems, so you need to stitch it really carefully and only just catch the facing fabric with your needle to ensure it stays up without being seen. Unfortunately because my ‘invisible’ thread is plastic, it’s a bit shiny so catches the light.

You can see 3 tiny golden dots where the flash has caught the thread and made it go shiny.

So concludes my make do and mend post. I never thought I would see the day that Vogue encouraged people to get out the needle and thread. However, evidently a lot of the clothes that they showcase are so expensive that they’re more of an investment, and as such should be cared for appropriately.

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