Whether you’re passionate about the environment, want to fight capitalism, looking for unique outfits, or just trying to save some money – thrift shopping is the best thing you can do.
Did you know that Americans on average only wear an item of clothing 7 times before they discard it? They also throw away between 30 and 40 kilograms of clothes every year. That’s a lot of clothing that ends up in landfills, and most of it is made of synthetic fibers and doesn’t really biodegrade, therefore it pollutes and hurts the environment with microplastics.
And just in case you didn’t know, making clothes uses a lot of resources and the fashion industry actually is one of the biggest contributors to world’s pollution.
Thrifting can really impact the environment because by buying less you create less waste, plus you’re giving a new life to an already used piece of clothing, which makes sure it doesn’t end up in a landfill. But if you want to take thrifting to a whole new level you gotta see what this mom of three is doing.
Sarah Tyau first thought of thrifting as a way to save some money on children’s clothing. Kids grow so quickly and they need so much clothing, and it’s not cheap at all.
It’s not exactly easy to find nice children’s clothes when buying secondhand, but Sarah came up with a very good solution. She just buys adult clothes that she knows she can alter into a cute outfit for her kid.
She’s not a professional seamstress by any means, she just uses the skills she learned in a home economics class in school. She says it’s all about small alterations first. How to make things shorter or tighten the waistline.
But she’s since become very passionate about her life philosophy “Look good, feel good, do good” and took some sewing courses to improve her skills and learn how to sew complicated designs.
However, most of the clothes she sewed and what got her nearly 300k followers on Instagram is just basic sewing skills and a bit of creativity. Sarah says that when she looks for clothes in a thrift shop she pays attention to the fabric and pattern. Once she sees something that catches her eye, it usually doesn’t take her more than a minute of touching it and swirling it around to see how the fabric moves, to figure out what she can make out of that thrifted item.
She looks at the elements she’d like to keep, or ones that she’d like to remove from a thrifted item of clothing, imagines the finished product in her head, and then it’s just a process of making that a reality.
How does Sarah manage to be a blogger, a Refashion Designer, a seamstress, and a mom of three, we’ll never know. She must have superpowers. But she doesn’t plan on stopping. Sarah has a YouTube channel, and there she has a series “Come thrift shopping with me”. where she popularized the idea of thrifting and making your own clothes.
In the series she goes to a thrift store, and picks a few items that catch her attention and shared the ideas that she has for them. Then her audience votes for which idea they like most and she films the process of transforming her thrifted buys into redesigned and improved clothing items.
She’s made quite a few dresses and jumpsuits for herself and her kids out of oversized shirts and trousers that she found second-hand. But we can’t wait to see what else she has in store for us, as it seems like with every recycled item of clothing she gets better and more creative with her redesigns.