Clothes mending workshops for May

Our clothes mending workshops were super busy in April. Both in person at The Create Place and online via Zoom. It is really encouraging  that so many of you want to mend your clothes, saving them from landfill to be worn again. We really appreciate the enthusiasm you bring to our workshops, chatting and helping each other with tips on clothes mending and how to live a bit more sustainably. Thanks to everyone who joins in to create this friendly and welcoming community. We are looking forward to being back in Bethnal Green and Brixton this month after a break for the Easter holidays. Please scroll down for workshop booking details.

Join us for a workshop

The Create Place
We are back  on the 9th and 23rd May this month. We are already full for the 9th May but we have lots of places for the 23rd if you want to book your place. Either book via Eventbrite or send us an email to hello@fastfashiontherapy.co.uk to book your place. 

The Remakery
We are back in Brixton on the 16th May. Bring along a couple of items of clothing to repair and we will help get you started.  If there are any particular materials you need, please let  us know in advance. We only have a couple of sewing machines so please bring along some hand sewing repairs too. Book via Eventbrite, £3.50

Online via Zoom
We welcome new attendees to our group of regulars who log in from around the UK, USA, Canada and Australia. It is an opportunity to get through our clothes repairs whilst we chat and share tips, it isn’t a formal teaching session but please ask questions. Join us on 6th June. As a subscriber to this newsletter you will automatically receive joining details.


We have been keeping a basic list of all the clothes that everyone has been bringing with them to our workshops. The idea is that we can compile a basic audit of the number and type of garments that people repair. An audit of the amount  garments that we have all saved from landfill. We will share the half year results before the summer.

Visible Mending Workshop x University of Birmingham

This event is presented in association with the University of Birmingham as part of The Air We Breathe

Join us for a practical and inspiring sewing workshop on repair, alteration and upcycling skills. You’ll learn how to mend with darning techniques and patch with scrap fabric and embellishments.

The fashion industry accounts for 10% of global carbon emissions. As citizens, we’re encouraged to live a more ethical life and simultaneously urged to consume more and more. But one small change we can all make is to upcycle or repair clothing rather than always buying new.

This event is presented in association with the University of Birmingham as part of The Air We Breathe – a brand new public programme, with an exhibition, activities and events that explore the close relationships between us, our environment and our air quality. From a hydrogen train to a sci-fi forest, discover the work being done by the University of Birmingham to deliver clean air both in Birmingham and around the world – and how you can get involved.

Materials and equipment will be provided but please bring along an item of clothing you would like to repair (by hand) or practice on the items provided. We will be showing hand sewing techniques on this occasion.

Details:

Where:

The Exchange: 3 Centenary Square, Birmingham, B1 2DR

When:

Saturday 19 March 2022, 14:00 to 16:00

Why sewicals are the new night out

‘Garment-mending workshops are opening up across the country, promoting a more responsible attitude to fashion and a space to unwind. Fleur Britten and her holey sweater drop in’ Stella Magazine, The Sunday Telegraph, 23 January 2022

We are thrilled to be included in Stella Magazine’s article on mending circles. Thanks to Fleur Britten for getting in touch and including Fast Fashion Therapy. It is encouraging to see so many clothes mending groups popping up all over the country.

‘People share ideas on the local area, their favourite charity shops and fashion’s lack of sustainability. People arrive with no sewing skills, but leave with their clothes fixed and always happy. It’s addictive.’

Sarah Richards, Fast Fashion Therapy, Stella Magazine

Want to find out more? Come along to one of our London workshops on Monday evenings or join us online if you live further way.

One of our sessions at The Create Place in Bethnal Green

Clothes Mending Workshop at Norwich University of the Arts

As part of their Winterfest event for students

This week we got the chance to go back to Art School but this time we were teaching and not students. Although I was tempted to join the students for the rest of their Winterfest event. Norwich University of the Arts host a week long event to help students with their wellbeing and socialise with other courses that they might not otherwise meet.

We taught an hour long darning workshop, explaining how darning can be used to mend jumpers, T-shirts and woven fabrics. Some of the students were from illustration and graphic design courses so they don’t usually get the chance to sew at college. However, they all picked up the technique really quickly. Practicing on swatches of an old worn out jumper, they are now ready to transfer their skills onto their own clothes.

Patching next and we explained the overstitch, which helps edge the patch and prevent it from fraying. Onto the Japanese technique of Boro and Sashiko. Some of the students also experimented with the traditional blanket stitch.

Thanks to Norwich University of the Arts for inviting us to be part of their Winterfest. I wanted to join the students on their other sessions which included drawing live owls, pottery painting and bingo!

Please get in touch if you are interested in us hosting a clothes mending workshop at your college, work, event or a group of friends. We can visit in person (if not to far from London) or host the workshops online.

Visiting Norwich gave us chance to visit a couple of our favourite charity shops

Sue Ryder vintage charity shop in Norwich city centre is a treasure trove of clothes, homeware, textiles and haberdashery. A short bus ride away is The Big C craft supply shop in Wymondham.An organised haven of art materials, fabric and haberdashery in a large warehouse. It is worth the trip, just remember to take a big bag with you!

Autumn Clothes Mending Events

Have you started wearing your winter clothes and noticed they need a bit of TLC? We have arranged lots of clothes mending workshops to help you those jumpers, tights and socks darned, jeans patched and hems repaired.

31 October | ‘Fix your Knitwear’ workshop at Woodfield Pavilion

Join us for this workshop to pick up some new sewing techniques that will help you to repair and refresh your tired knitwear. Save a jumper Save the planet!

Tickets are £15 per person (plus booking fee) and includes a small kit of 4 x needles, a selection of yarns (3 woollen yarns and 2 cotton yarns) and a ‘How to Darn’ instructional card.


1 November | Fast Fashion Therapy at home via Zoom

  • Join us via Zoom with your mending and a sewing kit.
  • Sign up for our newsletter for the Zoom link, which will be sent a few days before
  • The session is free
  • It isn’t a formal teaching session, an hour to encourage us all to get our clothes mended.
  • 7:30 to 8:30pm

6th November | Sutton Japanese Boro Workshop

Set in the unique Tudor setting of Whitehall Historic House, this workshop will help you mend and up-cycle old or damaged clothes. The workshop will take you through the basics ‘visible mending’ techniques to leave you feeling All materials and kit will be provided in the workshop.

8 + 22 November at The Create Place

A regular sewing workshop at The Create Place in Bethnal Green Eleanor and Sarah are on hand to help you repair and upcycle your clothes, practice techniques on examples or bring along your own clothes to repair and alter.

6:30 to 8pm – Free

Email us to book your place


15 November at The Remakery

A regular sewing workshop: Eleanor and Sarah are on hand to help you repair and upcycle your clothes, practice techniques on examples or bring along your own clothes to repair and alter.

£3.50 book via Eventbrite


View all of these events and future ones on our Calendar

Clothes mending workshops in London

Fast Fashion Therapy at The Create Place, Bethnal Green

Mending Monday was in full swing at The Create Place this week. Thanks to everyone who came along, here is how we got on…

Jess brought a few items along including these dungarees and a halter neck dress that had both ripped in the side seams. She pinned the seams back together before stitching them on the sewing machine. She finished off the edges with a zig zag stitch to prevent the seams from fraying. Jess also fixed a blouse where the sleeve had come away from the cuff. She brought the fabric down to the inside of the cuff and fixed it with a zig zag stitch on the sewing machine. 

Sarah returned with another pair of jeans to fix. They had the common problem of fraying on the inner thigh seam and in the knee.  Sarah didn’t want to throw the jeans away as there was nothing wrong with the rest of the denim. She used the sewing machine to secure the patch and cover the holes with a zig zag stitch. Sarah also brought a blouse where the sleeves were too tight. She cut off the sleeves and is in the process of neatening the edges to create a sleeveless blouse.

Eileen brought along this beautiful printed skirt which sadly has a couple of rips in the back. She didn’t want to give up on the skirt so is repairing it with a patch. Rummaging in the fabric stash, Eileen found this happy clashing patch to reinforce the weak fabric on her skirt. She started to repair the tear using a Boro stitch.

Connor brought along a couple of pairs of jeans to repair that had holes in them. He had never used a sewing machine before… As you can see, he did a great job patching the jeans using a zig zag stitch on the sewing machine. And a bright red contrast stitch on the reverse. 

Karen was busy recovering a seat cushion cover and ask questions on how to mend a blouse and a pair of trousers that had ripped. It is work in progress so we will post photos on a later newsletter. Want to join us? scroll down to find more information on how to join one of our in person or virtual workshops…

Want to join us to mend your clothes? We host regular workshops on a Monday evening:

1st Monday of the month – virtual (and free) mend-a-long via Google hangout. Sign up for our newsletter for joining details.

2nd and 4th Monday of the month – at The Create Place, Bethnal Green. Email us to book your free place.

3rd Monday of the month – The Remakery, Brixton. Book via Eventbrite, £3.50 per person.

We often host other workshops in and around London. Sign up for our newsletter for more details or get in touch if you would like us to host a workshop at your event.

Mending Workshops IRL!

Mending Monday was in full swing this week at The Create Place this week. Thanks to everyone who came along, here is how we got on…

Justin did a great job mending a rather large patch on the knee of his jeans. First of all he reinforced the hole by placing a denim patch behind the hole. Then zig zag stitched it in place using the sewing machine. He ironed on these fun patches over the hole. We recommended to Justin to hand sew the patches using an over stitch. It helps keep them in place. 

Sarah brought her favourite jeans with her to fix. They had the common problem of fraying on the inner thigh seam. Sarah didn’t want to throw the jeans away as there was nothing wrong with the rest of the denim. She used the sewing machine to secure the patch and cover the holes with a zig zag stitch.

Jess found a replacement button that co-ordinated with the button on the other side of the dungarees. It was a shank button and she sewed it on with a double thread to prevent it from falling off again. How to sew on a button. Jess found a replacement button that co-ordinated with the button on the other side of the dungarees. It was a shank button and she sewed it on with a double thread to prevent it from falling off again. How to sew on a button.

Scroll down to find more information on how to join one of our in person or online workshops…

Sutton

Saturday 3 July, 2 to 3:30pm ‘Fix your Clothes’ Workshop at Whitehall Historic House, Sutton: In this ‘Fix your Clothes’ workshop hosted by Whitehall Historic House, we’ll give you an introduction to the repair skills of darning and patching, and provide you with some of the materials you need to get started. Each participant will receive a kit to use during the workshop, the kit will include a selection of woven and knitted fabric patches, 1 cotton yarn, 1 woollen yarn, 1 regular sewing thread, 2 needles, and an instructional card for each technique for you to look back at after the workshop. Tickets are £10 Book via Eventbright.

The Remakery, Brixton, London

Third Monday of the month 6:30 to 8pm : We have teamed up with The Remakery for a regular clothes mending workshop. The format is the same as our session at The Create Place. Bring along an item of clothing that needs mending, along with a basic sewing kit. There are a few sewing machines available, iron and ironing board. Please let us know what you are mending in advance and we can bring along the relevant materials as we don’t have any storage at The Remakery. Book via Eventbrite, cost is £3.50.

The Create Place, Bethnal Green, London

Second and Fourth Mondays of the month 6:30 to 8pm We are back at The Create Place in Bethnal Green. Spaces are limited to 4 people and full details will be sent in advance so we can stay Covid safe. To help manage the limited space only one person can book one place per month. For example if you book for the 14th June you can’t book for 28th June. We are not advertising on Eventbrite, please email us if you would like to book for July.

First Monday of the month we host a free online mend-a-long. Bring along a couple of pieces of clothes mending with a basic sewing kit. Connect with us on video call and join in the chat as we mend. Feel free to ask us and the group questions. Sign up for our newsletter for joining details which are sent a few days in advance (previously on Zoom but we are exploring other platforms). (no online workshop in July, next meet up is 2nd August.

We look forward to seeing you online or in person at a workshop soon. 

Fashion Revolution Week

Fashion Revolution influenced us to teach and encourage others to mend their clothes. If you haven’t heard of the movement before, they were founded in the wake of the Rana Plaza disaster in 2013 and have become the world’s largest fashion activism movement, challenging the consumers, policymakers and fashion brands through education. Fashion Revolution week co-insides with the anniversary of the disaster. It is an opportunity to ask our favourite brands #whomademyclothes? and help us to refresh the values that we adhere to all year, mending clothes rather than always buying new.


The fibres our clothes are made of have a huge impact on the Earth. From the natural resources required to grow fibres such as cotton and viscose. To the waste left over from turning it into yarn and fabric. We will cover some of the most popular fibres and what is involved in their production. Plus there effect on our Earth. We investigated Cotton, Polyester, Viscose and Chemicals.

We tasked the brands we bought from to encourage transparency within their supply chain. Of course, it doesn’t matter how old your garment is or whether it is second hand, it is still relevant to ask the brand #whomademyclothes? . Read our top tips on how to approach your favourite brand.

Just over one year on from the start of the first lockdown in the U.K. and during Fashion Revolution Week, we wanted to reflect on how these changes have affected those working in the fashion industry. Many saw the first lockdown as an opportunity for the fashion industry to hit pause and come out the other side of it more sustainable, but are we actually any closer to this?  Find out more here.

Fashion Question Time has become a key part of the Fashion Revolution Week calendar over the last few years and acts as an essential platform in bringing together activists, legislators and business owners, allowing the general public to ask them questions and hearing their ideas from inside the industry. Read our full summary here.


Diary Dates

There are lots of ways to get involved in Fashion Revolution Week, including mending your clothes of course! Here are some of the events that we are planning…

Mend-a-long

Monday 19th April, 7:30 to 8:30pm (Via Zoom)

Bring along one or two items of clothing and a basic sewing kit. Join in the chat whilst we collectively mend our clothes. Feel free to ask us any clothes mending questions or how you can get involved in Fashion Revolution Week – sign up to our newsletter for joining details

Thursday 22nd April, 7:30 to 8:30pm (Instagram Live)

We thought we would try and Instagram live session – ask us any clothes mending conundrums or tips on how to get involved in Fashion Revolution Week @fastfashiontherapy

Saturday 24th April, 5:30pm

We are teaming up with the Remakery again to bring you a clothes-mend-a-long session. Book your place via Eventbrite.


If you are interested in learning more about the fashion industry, it’s complex supply chains and how it can improve it’s carbon footprint – we recommend registering for Fashion Question Time. It is a powerful platform to debate the future of the fashion industry. The panel is chaired by Baroness Lola Young, co-chair and cross-bench peer for the UK’s All-Party Parliamentary Group: Ethics and Sustainability in Fashion. Book via Eventbrite (hosted via Zoom). We also recommend this BBC Radio 4 programme by Patrick Grant that offers a good explanation of fashion industry supply chains.

Online clothes mending workshops

March & April 2021

We are teaching two masterclasses this month on patching and darning. See the graphics below for more details along with a link to book via Eventbrite. Get in touch on hello@fastfashiontherapy.co.uk if you have any questions.


27th March 11am to 12:30pm, £20 includes a kit worth £10
27th March 1:30 to 3pm, £20 includes a kit worth £10
Free mend-a-long. Join in the chat whilst we collectively mend our clothes. Monday 19 April 7:30 to 8:30pm to co-inside with Fashion Revolution Week. 22nd April a Q&A clothes mending session on Instagram live (time TBC)
Sign up to our newsletter for joining details.

How to darn | How to Patch

Join one of our online workshops and learn how to mend your clothes. Try an introduction to both darning and patching or a specialist masterclass for each technique. Each workshop includes the price of a clothes mending kit worth £10.

Virtual | Online Workshops




£5 discount if you book a darning and patching workshop together. They don’t have to be the same date.

Booking ends 5 days before the workshop date so that we can get your kit to you in time. Kit is worth £10, as seen on our Etsy shop. The workshop will take place via Zoom, joining details will be sent a few days in advance of the class.

Each workshop lasts 90 minutes (except the Slow Sunday event, which is 60mins). It includes live demonstrations, time to practice and ask questions. Please get in touch with any queries.