…we Love Fashion & Hate Sweatshops right?
Sarah Corbett writes…
I haven’t spoken to a craftivist yet who doesn’t appreciate the beauty and creativity that comes from fashion. We love the fact that we can express ourselves through clothes and feel confident in what wear.
But as fashion-lovers many of us discussed how we felt deeply saddened, shocked and angry by the news that over 1,000 people, mostly female garment workers, have been killed in the collapse this summer of a building in Bangladesh which housed factories making clothes for Benetton, Primark, Matalan, Mango and other major brands.
Sadly, often the clothes we buy come at a terrible human cost. Millions of workers around the world suffer poverty wages and exploitation, producing cheap fashion for our shops as they push for a profit driven fast fashion industry.
Our small, provocative Mini Protest Banners can help us reflect on this issue of sweatshops and what we can do as an individual (consumer, voter etc) to keep the spotlight on this ugly side of fashion we CAN change. Also by hanging your banner in public you can engage others in fighting for a world without sweatshops and supporting War on Want‘s www.lovefashionhatesweatshops.org campaign in a provocative but thoughtful way without people feeling threatened or preached at.
Over 1,000 people, mostly female garment workers, have been killed in the collapse of a building in Bangladesh which housed factories making clothes for Benetton, Primark, Matalan, Mango and other major brands.
So please do join us, craft author Perri Lewis, TV craftSTARS such as Tilly & the Buttons & Mr X Stitch, lots of awesome fashion & craftivst bloggers & WI groups such as Manchester WI, Borough Belles WI & Shoreditch Sisters WI to name a few, craft and craftivist groups around the world and many many other groups and individuals to support War on Want this summer in the lead up to London Fashion Week and create a patchwork of photographs where people have put up their banners somewhere in the world. The patchwork of photographs will be displayed at the Knitting and Stitching Show’s Upcycling Academy in London in Autumn 2013 but only if you help by taking part and sending in your photographs!
The DEADLINE for your images of your banner in situ is 5th October so they can be included in the display.
It’s wrong to think that we don’t have any power to change this ugly side of fashion. Please join us in celebrating our love of fashion and fighting for an industry without any ugly side, with no sweatshops. Wouldn’t it be brilliant if LFW 2014 was a show of only sweatshop-free clothes? Let’s fight together for that reality one stitch at a time!
Please do join us in this timely campaign, it’s has already helped pressure the world’s leading high street brands to sign the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh which is a great success. But we are not done. This is such an opportunity for the craft community to keep the media & customers’ eyes on this disaster and demand it never happens again.
Craftivists in Liverpool reflecting on the issue whilst doing their meditative stitching session.
Support we can offer:
- KIT: You can buy a bespoke #minifashionprotest kit at our Etsy shop to make a kit on your own or in a small group.
- INSTRUCTIONS VIDEO: We have an instruction video on how to make a Mini Protest Banner.
- EVENTS: Keep an eye out on our events page & Facebook Page for events happening in your area or set up your own & let us know so we can help promote & cover it. There are events across the UK and hopefully globally being plotted as I write this so look out for them!
- CONTACT US: For any questions or help please don’t hesitate to contact craftivistDOTcollective [at] gmail DOT com
Current groups who are planning their involvement– do get in touch if they are in your area & you want to get involved: Cardiff Craftivists Caerdydd, Manchester WI, Northern Ireland Craftivist Collective, Borough Belles WI, Little Stitches in Reading, Shoreditch Sisters WI, and more will be announced. But don’t forget you can do this project alone or with friends too in a closed ‘event’.
Over the next few months we will be having guest blogs from, to name a few:
- War on Want Campaigner Nadia Idle on whether boycotting is the only answer (*spoiler* it’s not!),
- Momtaz Begum-Hossain from The Make Escape on her experience of hand-stitching an entire dress(!)
- Zoe Robinson, Founder of ‘The Good Wardrobe
- and more to help keep us reflecting on all sides of the fashion industry whilst we stitch & discussing the issues.