Sunday, June 4

This Week’s Solution: Repair a Moth-eaten Sweater | fashion

WWe all know the feeling. You take out one of your favorite jumpers only to find that the moths have had a field day and filled it with holes. Do not panic. In the first of a new series on repairing and recycling precious items instead of throwing them away, we tried a wool repair service to solve the problem.

The Raf Simons sweater above belongs to one of our colleagues who carefully stores his knitwear at the end of winter in vacuum-packed bags in his loft. But when he pulled this one out, he discovered, despite his best prevention efforts, that it had been ravaged by moths – four 10p-sized holes in the front. After following the advice of english heritage To freeze the sweater for two weeks to kill the moth larvae, we brought the sacred fabric to our knitting session, where one of Seam’s creators, Georgia de Castro Keeling, breathed new life into the sweater.

Layla Sargent, a London-based entrepreneur, has created the seam to help solve exactly this kind of problem. Helping people love their clothes, Seam’s growing network of 700 “ makers ”, comprising Savile Row tailors, theater tailors, fashion students, and professional seamstresses, among others, currently serves thousands of customers, mending clothing, not just sweaters, which could have seen better days, as well as altering clothing to fit perfectly to increase the life of a garment.

After being thoroughly examined, the manufacturer goes to the customer’s home or, in some cases, the manufacturer’s studio, to fix his prized possessions. Prices range from £ 3 to replace a button to £ 70 to replace a dress’s lining, and most jobs like adjusting the waist of pants, re-hemming a dress, or repairing a tear or hole , cost £ 15. Tailor made and tailor made projects have custom prices agreed between the manufacturer and the customer.

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Like most great business ideas, Seam is the result of an explosive moment that arises from personal experience. Growing up in Birmingham, Sargent, 32, had her seamstress grandmother, Patricia Baxter, tailor her clothes to fit her 6-foot figure and says she thought it was something everyone had access to growing up, until he realized that it was not so. “Naively, I thought it was normal! But I began to realize that my friends had a very different relationship with fashion: they used things and threw them away very quickly, “Sargent tells the magazine. Observer.

Such dissatisfaction, combined with the rise of the throwaway culture, propelled the idea of ​​a brain wave into a full-blown business model. “As I learned more about the growing climate crisis, I thought, ‘Why can’t we do this better? Why can’t more people have access to people who will help them love their clothes longer? ‘”

Moth-ravaged jersey before The Seam did his magic
Moth-ravaged sweater before the Lode worked its magic

Statistics confirm the need for social enterprises like Sargent’s, who points to a 2017 WRAP report that suggested clothing repair models offer the potential to extend the average life of a garment from 3.3 years to 4.5 years, which If applied to just 5% of clothing in the UK it would save some 80,000 tonnes of CO2 and £ 5 billion in resources used to supply, wash and dispose of clothing.

She also has her own research to share. “We interviewed 200 women in London and found that 81% think their body shape is abnormal,” says Sargent. “That is not a mistake. We have grown up trying to squeeze and squish our bodies in clothes made to standardized sizes that are essentially made for everyone and no one. What we are left with is this really unhealthy mentality that the problem is with our bodies and not with our clothes. “

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Next year will see Seam expand into new yet to be announced areas of the UK, but before that, it will partner with fashion rental service By Rotation to help its users repair and restore clothing to keep it profitable for longer. . It’s part of Seam’s ongoing mission to “close the cycle of circularity,” says Sargent.

For more details and how to use the service, go to

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