When I first met my boyfriend, I was wearing a tee shirt made of two old tee shirts stitched together, and a pair of old jeans covered in patches of fabric collected from my travels around south-east Asia.
He walked over to me in the pub and asked where I got my tee shirt from. “I made it myself,” I gleefully replied, as I saw his eyebrows rise. He was definitely impressed, and we spent the next hour discussing a shared interest in crafts, and a shared urge to recycle to save money (and the planet!) wherever possible in our lives.
Since then, we have moved in together and my boyfriend is seeing the other side of my fetish for fabric – the piles and piles of old clothes and cuttings that sit in bags all over our house! He probably regrets showing any interest at all now, given the amount of storage space I’m occupying with all my stuff!
But I do make a point of doing my best to re-use and recycle clothes that I no longer wear. I do give some to charity, but I love to get my scissors out and turn the purchases of seasons gone by into something fresh that might be my new conversation starters!
What’s doubly satisfying is turning bargains into double bargains, by taking clothes that I already know I got a great deal on and doubling their lifespan by re-imagining them.
For example, I like to use discount codes from Netvouchercodes.co.uk and managed to pick up a couple of Debenhams sweaters last autumn with 10 per cent off. I used them over winter for morning runs, but the cuffs got a bit saggy and there were some loose threads hanging.
So this year, I’ve been cutting up the sweaters and combining them with elastic to make some great, unique bracelets for my boyfriend and some of my friends. My boyfriend likes to wear bracelets that look a bit different, and he often goes for dangly, straggly looking friendship bracelets or leathery type things. I’ve been stitching patches and labels onto segments of my bargain sweaters and turning them into bracelets that he seems to really like.
Doing things like this is great fun, great for saving money on presents for people (bracelets make particularly good gifts!) and great for keeping those creative juices flowing!
This is a guest post from Francis Quaker over at Netvouchercodes.co.uk.