Let’s have a Slow Fashion October

Let's have a Slow Fashion October

Ever since my post the other day (well, since last Me Made May, actually) I’ve been thinking about the need for another sort of month. I believe this is perfectly clear but let me repeat myself just in case: I think Me Made May is awesome and important and completely wonderful — I support it fully and do not wish to detract from it in any way. It was created by and for sewers, though, and it just so happens that it’s not especially well-timed for knitters. (Unless you live in Denver, where it’s still snowing!) So I’ve long been pondering a month better suited for knitters, but the world doesn’t need another me-made month, per se. And besides which, I’d like the scope of this to be different and broader. I’d like us to be able to celebrate not only our own makes (although definitely that!) but clothes that have been made for us by others; worn over the course of years or decades; handed down or rescued from thrift shops or attics; mended; handcrafted in the small studios of slow fashion designers and/or from ethical fabrics; and so on. I want it to be about responsible and sustainable fashion in all its splendor, in other words. An opportunity to discuss and explore the wide range of topics that are at the core of slow fashion. Fall is undeniably peak fashion season, and by October there’s pretty sure to be a bit of a chill in the air in most of the US (a bit colder up north!), while hopefully still a bit of a chill lingering for our friends down under as well. So it seems perfect to me.

I’ll have a lot more to say between now and then about ways to participate and contribute (beyond IG selfies), but I wanted to publicly put the idea forth in the meantime. So who’s in?

Photos from my Amanda cardigan and my Make, Knit, Mend post, which I hope you’ll read if you haven’t before

79 thoughts on “Let’s have a Slow Fashion October

  1. It sounds like a fabulous idea. I love Me Made May and I’m having a great time with it this year, but as you say, October would fit much better with (well, those in the Northern Hemisphere). I love pulling all the winter woollies out of storage, rediscovering old friends and planning new ones.

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  2. I love this. I’m in! I’ve never participated in Me Made May, though I love watching it from the sidelines you’re absolutely right about the May timing not being particularly well suited to my predominantly warm wooly hand made wardrobe. I’m really looking forward to this!

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  3. i like this idea very much and will participate!
    me_made_may might be a great idea but i think, something has gone in the wrong direction here and there…
    on so many blogs i have read that people are making many new clothes, only to be able to present something new, something selfmade. but isn’t this just another kind of consumerism? buying loads of fabric or yarn and making tall piles of dresses, shirts and sweaters or scarf is just another waste of ressources and has nothing to do with sustainability. it’s the same waste of ressources as buying too many clothes.
    isn’t making only the amount of clothes one really needs and wears sustainability? so: YES TO SLOW FASHION!!!

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  4. I’m in. This year is my first Me Made May and has been a very interesting and revealing month so far. There’s time for reflection and making new clothes between now and October, and having a chance to wear all the knitwear would be lovely!

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  5. Love this! I have been participating in Me Made May this year but it is getting a little difficult now that the weather is getting hotter. The thought of a whole month dedicated to slow fashion (and for me, the opportunity to wear all my wooly knits) is pretty exciting.

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  6. I’m in – and I love the idea of encompassing all of slow fashion. Not a lot of my wardrobe (yet) is made by me, but the majority of my clothing purchases are second hand. My goal being that when I do make new purchases, I can support sustainable businesses. (For both my clothing and coffee bean farmers – I can’t forget my coffee! :))

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  7. Heck yah! This is a great idea. Being only a knitter who isn’t able to produce something at the speed of Me Make May, I’ve been craving something to participate in.

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  8. Yes! I love this idea!
    I’m participating in Me Made May this year. For me it’s been a way to reflect on what I actually wear. Which, I’m shocked, is most of the things that I make these days.

    Trying to find my way from making all the new patterns in all the new fabric as soon as I possibly can (whether or not I actually will wear the item or love the fabric), to slowing down and making only things that I will wear and feel good in and love for years to come has been an interesting journey. I see it as the next step in my fashion and crafting life, one that Me Made May has pushed me towards. I think that this is the next logical step. I’m excited to see what ideas you have and what happens in October.

    And I’m excited for the snow to not come back to Denver for a few months…

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  9. Yes, please put my name on the list. There are so many encouraging things to participate in out there. Iknitarod in January–Can you knit a whole sweater while the race is on? Then there’s Tour de Fleece–how much yarn can you spin while the Tour de France is on? You can do these on your own, which I do, or “join” groups of like-minded people. Lots of inspiration out there. MeMadeMay has inspired me to cast on 2 t shirts. Really looking forward to SloTober.

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  10. Great idea! Me-made-may is definitely inspiring to a knitter like me, but in a maybe-in-a-few-years kinda way. Slow fashion October is something I could be down for right now!

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  11. This sounds like a wonderful idea! I love the concept of appreciating the broader spectrum of slow fashion, including items from artisan makers. And while Me Made May is nice, especially as inspiration for people who have been considering making more of their own clothing, a month that would work for knitters seems like an excellent idea.

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  12. I’m In!!! Seems like there aren’t as many things planned during the Winter Months as you would think.. I wonder if that is because of the Holidays? Anyway, Global Warming or Not I’ve found it colder for longer for the last few years here in Western North Carolina, SOOOO bring it on!!!!

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  13. Yes! October sounds perfect! This is my first Me Made May, as I’m just starting to get back into sewing. But I’ve been wearing a ton of my handknits. I’m in the NW, and we’re stilling having just enough chill to be able to alternate sweater days with sandals days.

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  14. I like this idea. I’m not wild about monthly focuses, honestly. A whole season seems more realistic. Like the whole of Fall.

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  15. I think this is awesome! I love that it is a totally different season to show off different types of garments. This will really complement Me Made May and expand the appreciation of handmade clothes.

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  16. I would like participate. I’ve been trying to methodically replace all my most worn clothing with hand made pieces. When you live in the far north, this is a big goal. I have been thinking about how to document a year long push to make this happen. Slow Fashion October is just what I need. Thank you!

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  17. Great idea! I’d love to participate in something a little slower and more thoughtful, especially in the month before the holidays begin (which is when I need to pause, take a big breath and think about how I am are living my life.)

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  18. Have you heard of Wovember? Brain child of Felicity Ford and I believe Kate Davis. Celebrating everything wool. Kind of the same idea and same time.

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  19. I like that idea a lot, especially the focus not only on knitting or sewing, but on mending and taking care of as well. I rather like the idea of moving it forward to Slow Fashion Sept however

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  20. Great idea, and I’d love to participate fully in my blog as well. Looking forward to your follow-up. Isn’t the Knitting in Public day in October too? Happy to be corrected if I’m wrong.

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  21. I’m in! This sounds great, Karen. Your posts about crafting an ethical, well-fitting, and much loved wardrobe have been inspiring me and really getting me thinking about the things that I support when I choose to wear something. I am trying to kick my lingering consumerist tendencies, and it would be so great to see how others approach slow clothing!

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  22. I love this idea! I have been joking that a Me-Made-March for knitters would be be perfect, but I really like the idea of opening it up to be about the broader movement/choices of slow fashion.

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  23. I love the scope of this, Karen. Some of my favorite things are remakes of things I’ve inherited and/or found along the way. It would be such a treat to be able to share them.

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  24. Count me in! I agree with you that May is a difficult month to show off your knitwear. I don’t sew, so I can mostly just look at others’ wonderful Me Made May projects and maybe occasionally wear some of my handmade sweaters if the day isn’t too hot.

    The question of quality over quantity is also a significant one here. Knitting, being rather slow in comparison with sewing, inspires a lot of thought about how your time commitment is going to pay off. (I don’t mean to imply that sewing doesn’t do that — only that you can, on average, spend months on a sweater, while you can reasonably cut and sew a garment in more like a matter of hours.) As I got into making my own sweaters, I was also becoming increasingly aware that I don’t need many different clothes, but that I need to know my clothes, take care of them, and be able to combine them into wearable and aesthetically pleasing ensembles. And that was before I read Elizabeth Cline’s _Overdressed_ and learned more about what fast fashion really entails… Just to be clear, I do think sewing can inspire this kind of thoughtfulness, too, and that thoughtfulness, even more than the beautiful garments, is what we should celebrate more.

    So a slow fashion month would be truly fantastic.

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  25. Great idea!! I never participate in Me Made May because I don’t sew enough garments to do it. But I wear knitted things just about every day from September thru April up here in Wisconsin. I want to do more up cycled clothes and garment sewing, too. Maybe this will be the inspiration I need!

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  26. I am so excited about this! I am 100% in! I live in Alaska so my winter/fall wardrobe is usually what I contribute to with my makes, I get to wear warm weather clothes so little in the year that it’s rarely my priority with my knitting and sewing time, so I always feel like I don’t have enough variety to participate in Me Made May. So this is something that I’ve been hoping would get created for a very long time! It’s even better that it encompasses all slow fashion, which can always use more awareness raised to our non-crafting friends. Thank you for doing this!

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  28. Yours is a welcome-all idea Karen. Thank you for leading the way — I believe it will be an eye opener.

    As a prolific maker, I struggle with the quality vs quantity concept. Making is connected to my well being. I have a deep seated need to master fit and design, which requires several iterations of a garment. I use thrifted fabric whenever possible and save the scraps for quilting or other projects. I donate garments to charity if they do not fit me properly. Lots of fabric passes through my hands — I look forward to other’s ideas about thoughtful resourcing.

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  29. I like this too. I was a little horrified when I saw someone say they were doing mmm and trying not to repeat any items. Whew, that is a big closet to me. I’m doing mmm with many repeats. Looking forward to it. Let’s slow down.

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  30. I’m definitely in! I was actually just thinking about this on my way to work this morning since there was a bit of a chill in the air and I was actually able to wear one of my sweaters once again. I’ve also been wearing quite a bit of my secondhand purchases and I think they deserve a little credit as well. Can’t wait to hear more!

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  31. Hear, Hear on all of the above to be in, follow etc! My mad schedule does not always allow me to participate but I certainly follow, and you are always inspiring Karen. Appreciate you and your blog so much!

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  32. Love it! Thank you for the mention of thrifting and re-purposing. Instant fashion is bad for the planet and promotes horrible labor conditions for so many. Let’s use what we have and make our own.

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  34. I like it. I’m pretty new to making clothing, and I’m being careful to check the temptation to replace or add too much to what I already own. Conscious making is great, but it isn’t better than using what you already have. My wardrobe is comprised in large part of second hand and mended garments, and I like the idea of putting some more emphasis on that within the making community.

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  40. Yes! Count me in! I tried Me-Made-May for the first time this year and really felt that we needed a Me-Made-November or something for knitters… This seems like a perfect solution!

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