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Laura Gibbons, 23-- Gloucestershire, UK
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Green Circle Textiles
Please Note: All Answers and Photos are Submitted by the Artist. Permission to use any information or photos must be requested from the individual themselves.
How long have you been Upcycling/Refashioning/Recreating Clothing from thrifted textiles?
I started my garment making journey properly about 1 year ago. Before that, I had beginner sewing skills and would make small textiles like bags and pencil cases. I've always wanted to take the leap and make my own clothes and this year I jumped!
How long have you been sewing?
I have been sewing for as long as I can remember, but I think from about the age of 10. I learnt to use a sewing machine in school and basic skills like making a patchwork cushion. I continued making small things like this until this year where I expanded my skills to include garment making.
How did you get started in Upcycling/Refashioning?
I've always dreamed of making my own clothes. But I think I really wanted to pursue it this year to increase my own sustainability. I decided to pledge not to buy any new clothing (I occasionally but a second hand item, but rarely), as I knew that I had a bad habit of fast fashion. I wanted to simplify my wardrobe and embrace my own style and I am able to make things exactly the way I want them to be which is great as I am very picky.
Why do you Upcycle/Refashion/Recreate clothing from thrifted textiles?
There is so much waste in the fashion industry that there is plenty of second hand and reclaimed fabrics to use. It's often a cheaper alternative, and on the occasion I find something I can use in a charity shop my money spent often goes to a good cause. I enjoy the challenge of turning one thing into something entirely different and using what materials I have to hand before buying anything.
What type of clothing do you like to create and why?
I like making dresses as I enjoy wearing them the most! Nothing feels better than to get a lot of use out of something you've made for yourself.
What is your favorite textile to Upcycle/Refashion/Recreate from? and why?
I love using polycotton bedding because you can often find cute prints, it's a nice weight for dress making and it's a large amount of material for a low cost. I like that I am saving the plastic fibres from waste too! If I ever were to buy brand new textiles I'd only use natural fibres. But it makes me happy to know less plastic is being wasted and can be reused endlessly until the fabric comes to the end of its life.
What was your favorite project?
I recently made the ruffle sleeve top by peppermint magazine. I loved the bedding I used and I am pleased with the evolution of my sewing skills with this project. Unfortunately it is too big for me but that only means I get to share my skills and gift this lovely blouse to someone close to me who I know will cherish it and get a lot of use from it!