Saturday, 3 March 2018

Workshop on finding meaning in what we wear


Today our Simple Living Toowoomba group had the pleasure of hosting the delightful Jane Milburn, author of Slow Clothing:Finding meaning in what we wear. As our co-ordinator, Margy, wrote in the promotion for the workshop:  Slow Clothing is the antithesis of fast fashion. It is a way of thinking about, choosing and wearing clothes so they bring value, meaning and joy to everyday. We consider the substance of clothing as part of an holistic approach to living lightly on Earth.




Jane commenced the workshop with giving a little information about her background as she studied agricultural science at Uni and then became a rural reporter with the ABC. She is a country girl at heart although she lives in the city. In the Sew It Again project she upcycled garments each day in 2014  and the following year won the Social Media category winner in the Rural Press Club of Queensland's Excellence in Rural Journalism 2015 Awards.

 
Jane was wearing a skirt made from jeans which she added ruffles to. So creative! She brought along a suitcase full of the clothes she has bought at Op Shops and then upcycled into unique garments.




This pinafore was made from old jeans...



...as was this one. 



I think this is the outfit Jane is wearing in the blog post Living lightly in everyday practice. Doesn't it look fantastic in the photos? 


This dress was one of my favourites and Jane explained how she put it all together. She certainly is very creative as I am sure I wouldn't be able to put such an outfit together and make it look so pretty.



I think the bottom section was made from table cloths.




Two jumpers sewn together to make a skirt with holes made in the knit fabric and embroidered. 




Another skirt made from various knit fabrics. 




We were also shown how to make continuous Tshirt yarn....





....which looks so easy to do....





...and there are heaps of tutorials on Pinterest so I am going to give this a try soon. Watch this space. I have made continuous bias binding but not Tshirt yarn.





You can make the yarn in various thicknesses depending on what you want to construct out of it....



...like this necklace. 




We asked Jane to bring along one of her history skirts as I wanted to see how she attaches a knitted top to the woven part of the skirt as she mentioned how to make the skirts in her book. One of the skirts is featured on the front and  was made with fabric remnants her mother had saved.




I just love the colours in this one and a couple of the ladies held it up for some photos. Oh, I know why I like this fabric...on closer inspection there is a lot of pink and green together. LOL! My favourite colours for fabric.

We could have listened to Jane for much longer as the time just went so quickly. If you get a chance to read her book I am sure you will be fascinated by her story and be encouraged to consider buying clothes made from natural fibres and perhaps even buy from the Op Shops and make a unique garment for yourself. Check out this page and you might even find she will be speaking at a venue near you this year if you live in Australia.


My weekly goodies from Birdsong Market Garden. Yum yum! Good quality organically grown veggies.

We have a number of interesting workshops coming up this year including a visit to Birdsong Market Garden in April,  soapmaking, toothbrush rag rugs and in September a visit from Linda Brennan, author of A Delicious Bunch: Growing and Cooking with Edible Flowers.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend everyone!

 







23 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing - looks like you have some great workshops

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    1. We certainly do, Sharmayne. They are very informative.

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  2. The workshop sounds so interesting and informative, Chel.
    I make t-shirt yarn and have made braided floor mats and table mats. I should check Pinterest to see what other ideas are out there.

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    1. Nil, I have seen Tshirt yarn before on Pinterest but have never bothered to make it. I will give it a try and perhaps make some necklaces.

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  3. I heard an interview on ABC radio with Jane recently, Chel, and it was fascinating. I really like her approach to clothing and fashion. You are so lucky to have great workshops in your local area. Today, I've been mending my favourite (and only) pair of denim shorts. I've loved them a bit too much and they needed patching. So, I've been using little sashiko stitches to try boro mending. This will extend the life of my shorts and adds a few interesting fabric patches. Meg:)

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    1. Meg, Jane was interviewed by our Local ABC before the workshop. Unfortunately I missed it. I did try to find it on the ABC website without success. I love the boro mending. Jane is really into mending and using patches.

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  4. I first heard about Jane's work via TEDxQUT. Your photos are wonderful and show so much more of Jane's re-creating New with old projects. Some I personally wouldn't wear I think ( but in a shop of new clothes there would be ones I also wouldn't wear either) but love the skirt that was held up for a photo. My mother would make clothes for me out of hers and friends' clothing...they were always beautifully made, so over the years I have often made over no longer useful garments. In recent years I haven't done this which is a shame.

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    1. Maria, I also wouldn't wear some of the clothes as I am a bit long in the tooth but I do like the look of them. I haven't made any clothes either for some time apart from a pair of PJs I made when we had a sewing challenge on the Down to Earth forum before it closed down.

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  5. Thanks for sharing your day with us Chel. Jane Milburn certainly is an inspiration isn't she? The t-shirt yarn looks interesting so I'll have to follow that up. Knitted bathmats and door mats would be fun I think.

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  6. Fascinating stuff Chel. I wonder if Jane Milburn ever comes to Melbourne?
    Gina

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    1. Gina, Jane will be speaking in Melbourne at the Soul Craft Festival on the 9th June according to the 'Engage Me' section on her website Textile Beat.

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  7. Fran, you would have loved the workshop. If you happen to be visiting over in the east during the year Jane will be speaking in Victoria and NSW at some stage.

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  8. I was going to come to this workshop Chel, with a friend, but her baby wasn't well, and I didn't feel like doing the drive by myself......looks like I missed a good day. There's a little shop up the road that remakes clothes, adding doilies and tablecloths, she tea-dyes a lot too. I like re-using/remaking nice cotton and linen opshop clothes, but the other's not really my thing.....such a fine line between tat and upcycled elegance.

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  9. Nanette, I saw on Jane'e website that she will be in Beenleigh on the 21st April if that helps. I can recommend her workshops.

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    1. Thanks Chel, I'll check it out :)

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  10. Even though I don't venture to the workshops, much, I really enjoy reading your write-ups about them. I can see plenty of enthusiastic ladies and gents, learning how to do more for themselves, at Jane's workshop. She looks and sounds like, a very interesting person. :)

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    1. Chris, I am glad you enjoy reading about the workshops. It is hard to know exactly what is of interest to readers so I just charge on regardless. LOL! Jane is certainly a gifted speaker.

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  11. Such an interesting post Chel. In Tasmania I have been wearing a red cardigan handknitted by my great Aunt which was my Mums. I have had so many comments about it from lots of women admiring the quality and yet it must be at least 15 years old and still like new. Of course I never get to wear it in Mackay. It is great to see that people still appreciate quality handmade garments. Pauline.

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    1. Pauline, I can imagine you wouldn't wear your cardigan in Mackay. LOL! It is cooling down here so the winter clothing will be dragged out soon. That cardigan sounded just lovely.

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  12. Wow Chel it looks like it would have been one interesting workshop. I cant imagine living in a denim pinafore. Just too hot and heavy here. Mind you they look great and in a cooler climate would be brilliant. I like very plain and simple clothing. I do like the skirt that Jane is wearing. I could see muself doing something like that with old jeans. My clothes get worn until they are only fit for the rag bag.
    You vegie goodies look delicious.

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    1. Jane, it did feel a little too heavy for me but I have seen photos of Jane in it and she looks great. I am a bit long in the tooth for such outfits though but if I was young again...who knows? Jane is very short so the skirt looked very nice on her.

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  13. Ohh...I wish I was there with you....not easy from Sicily....but it seems to me very very interesting. And your post, with all these pictures, gave me inspiration to recycle some old dresses. I've already transformed some pair of jeans in lovely bags..... Tahnk you for sharing!

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  14. What a wonderfully creative woman! I shall now have to spend time this evening learning more about her. So glad you shared, Chel. :-) xxx

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