February 22

Published by Panetary Health Initiative on

Sashiko Denim Repair

I wonder if anyone has worked out a way to measure the impact of sheer and unadulterated joy on planetary health? This afternoon I did something so unexpected and creative that I’m still basking in the afterglow!

When my boys left home they also left behind a pile of ripped jeans they’d outlived. I couldn’t bear to throw them out. Last night I googled the Japanese art of Boro. The art of mending textiles using rags or scraps of cloth.

 As far back as the 17th century, peasants, merchants and artisans would patch up clothing and quilts using scraps of old kimonos or hemp fabric, making the garment last long enough to be passed down through generations. Sashiko is a form of embroidery, usually a running stitch, and is literally translated to little stabs. It’s sturdy method makes is ideal for boro and perfect for mending denim. (from HonestlyWTF)

In Australia, about 85% of textiles go to waste each year. To put this into perspective, that’s enough to fill Sydney Harbour every year! 

I still had the boys’ jeans because I worry about this waste of textiles. I also still had my grandmother’s sewing basket.

So, this afternooon, I googled a video on how to do Sashiko, found some thread and a small piece of black fabric in my grandmother’s sewing basket, and mended a pair of jeans using Sashiko embroidery. My boys may have outgrown them but they fit me perfectly and I simply can’t wait to wear them! I feel as though my grandmother is smiling down on me tonight.

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