The joy of handmade

October 17, 2017

There’s this bizarre phenomenon, you’ve probably noticed it too: the Zara clone. Every season there seems to be at least one high street piece of clothing that becomes ubiquitous, whether it’s that blue off-shoulder ruffle dress or that coat. With social media it seems that trends spread like wildfire and then refuse to die. The result is that everyone just looks kind of the same! Whether this trend is driven by fast fashion’s micro-seasons and aggressive marketing or social media, I think we can all agree that it’s not a great look. Recently I’ve found myself swooning over check blazers and slogan jumpers, just because so many people are wearing them and looking fabulous. Damn you, beautiful internet people!

But how do we avoid looking just like everyone else when marketing is now so universal and subtle? I’ve decided to tackle the problem by making my own clothes. It’s all too easy to see something, want it and to click buy; making something by hand requires planning and considerable time investment. That’s not to say it isn’t worth it, there’s no feeling better than the satisfaction of slipping into something you made with your own two hands. It does however make you reconsider whether trend pieces are really worth it, and how to make something that can be worn again and again.

If you've never made a piece of clothing by hand, I recommend you try it at least once. Only when you make something yourself can you really understand the labour that goes into making clothes. Creating something yourself fosters a sense of ownership with the piece, it is after all, totally unique and individual to you. Not to mention that after the hours required making something you'll want to revel in your spoils and show off your handiwork to the world.

I'm not a confident knitter by any standards, so I wouldn't have even attempted a whole jumper were it not for the easy to follow pattern from Wool and the Gang. The One Sweet Sweater kit is listed as Easy but that doesn't dictate how long a project will take. After several false starts and some time consuming mistakes, it looked as though I might get the jumper done in about 4 weeks. Fast forward 4 months and it's finally done.

The jumper fits the oversized sleeve trend but it can be worn in several different ways. The colour is quite bold so it’s very clear when I’m repeating an outfit, but this isn't a problem because it's a colour I love to wear. It may not be perfectly tailored, but the fact that I made it makes me proud to wear it. Plus if I ever get really sick of it, it can always be unravelled and made into something new.

top//People Tree    jumper//c/o Wool and the Gang    necklace//Oh My Clumsy Heart
//vintage, altered    orange tote//Baggu (similar)    shoes//French market
This outfit has:
Organic cotton
Recycled cotton

You Might Also Like


  1. That is a groovy sweater! I don't think Zara is that big of a deal in Virginia, but all the college kids dress the same. I'm feeling a little sad that, because of accepting so many (too many) comped clothes in the last couple months, I'm starting to lose my sense of what I actually like. I need to calm down.

    1. Thank you! I think it varies from place to place, I understand that people want to fit in and buy what's available, but when it comes to fashion "influencers" it's just annoying. I feel that too, I'm also influenced by what people around me are wearing so I sometimes need a day to myself just to re-calibrate.

  2. I love this, you picked a Fab colour

  3. Love your handknitted creation. I have a wool and the gang kit awaiting completion (actually I haven't managed to start it yet). I am feeling inspired by your post to get on with it and nostalgic for when I had time to make my own dresses. I am with you, I much prefer a unique look rather than a generic trend and rarely buy clothes from high street shops these days.

  4. Love the sweater, and that it's been made by your very own hands! I'm a big Wool & The Gang fan, but so far I've only made one oversized scarf and two hats... I'm scared of the longer harder projects!

    Besma | Curiously Conscious

  5. Love the jumper! Which colour is it? I'm after doing one of the cardigan kits from the same yarn and I am so in love with that colour 😍

  6. This is a wonderful sharing. Keep 'em coming!

  7. Wow! I so love your handknitted creation. Can I get 2 of it pls?

  8. it’s such a joy reading your posts. Great job!


Hello, thanks for taking the time to write a comment. I don't always reply (because I'm too busy hiding under a rock) but I read and appreciate every single one!