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Where do your torn or ruined clothes go? What happens to clothes you no longer like?

back to mending Our grandparents repaired their clothes out of necessity, they could not afford to have many clothes, they used the same jackets and trousers for years... Could you do that? Mmmmh I don’t think so! We now live in a society where the wardrobe has to be updated every season, or at least revisited.

In this booklet, you will discover a new system for no longer throwing away any type of fabric or garment that has been laundered, but for transforming it with your own hands with simple gestures into something new and unique.

fast fashion

You hear a lot about this ...but do you know what it is?

It is a clothing industry that makes low quality clothes at super low prices and launches new collections all the time. This means that everything that is not sold becomes waste and has to be thrown away. The same happens into shops with all those garments that have the smallest imperfection. They cannot be sold and come to an end being wasted.

If there are basically four new collections per year, think how much unsold merchandise there is at the end of each one...

patches out of fashion? The fashion of patching and repairing clothes is slowly making a comeback, yes for the aesthetic factor, but above all for a sustainability reason. Some technical big brands are trying to work on a new approach: they produce outdoor clothing paying attention to the origin of the materials and their composition while doing good for the planet. Patagonia a few years ago created “Worn Ware”, a programme to extend the life of their products purchased by customers. The programme provides meaningful resources for responsible care, repair, reuse, resale and recycling at the end of a garment’s life cycle.

is the leading textile company manteco for sustainability and high-quality fabrics located in Montemurlo (PO). There, they recycle unsold and old clothes by transforming them into new yarns. In the production process they also create ‘recipes’ in which they mix fibres of different materials and colours to create new ones.

The visit to their factory and the understanding of their fiber processing was a source of inspiration for our new experimentation.

before we start, let’s just notice that an old garment can: be repaired

be used to repaire

now you’re ready to repair your clothes! What you need: + old garments (to repaire and to be repaired) blender scissors paper pen or chalkstick pins felting kit: felting needle foam cube

1. Choose what you would like to make new (ex. the bag) and take a piece of scrap material or a garment you would throw away (the broken jeans).

2. Draw the shape of the patch you want on paper. Trace it twice on the piece of scrap fabric and cut it out.

3. Cut the excess scrap material, or whatever othe colour you want for your patch into small squares about 3x 3cm. Now blend them untill you see them turning into wool.

4. Take what you want to repair (the bag) and place the two previously cut pieces of fabric one on top and one underneath the broken layer of your garment so that they match. You can fix them on top of the foam cube with pins, if needed.

Here’s your brand new bag: working again and nicer as ever!

5. Place the shredded fibers on top, take the felting needle and punch up and down around until the fibers stick to the patch. This will take a bit of time, be patient!

You can do the same by playing around with garments, colours, blends, fibers... Hands on!

Have you ever heard the term

cradle to cradle ?

It is an approach to system design that consists of adapting industrial models to nature, i.e. converting production processes by assimilating the materials used into natural elements, which must then regenerate. Creadle to Creadle takes into account economic, industrial and social aspects to create systems that are not only efficient, but also aim to minimise waste. This is why it is an essential tool for the Circular Economy.

sustainable future

How do you like the idea of having stations in cities, towns or meeting places where you can interact with people who can explain and help you to be more sustainable? How do you feel about social activities, where you can bring discarded materials and share them with others, learn how to fix an old garment or recycle it to create something new while getting to know your neighbours?

leave comments, suggestions for us:

thanks :)

Project by Cemin Valentina and Marina Piva Design & Production – SS22 Prof. Aart van Bezooijen Master in Eco-Social Design – unibz