The Jean Project: Bling-it-on with Upcycling

 I own and have accumulated probably as many as thirty pairs of jeans, being that annoying girl that eats a lot but never gets fat, still wearing the same waist size from high school. And I also own as many mass fashion Forever 21, Zara, or H&M denims as any of you. Then, doesn’t that make me a hypocrite for all the talk of being sustainable, turning to handlooms and handcrafted, and so on? 

Lets face it, not all of us are rich enough to go full scale handloom, handcrafted and organic in a short span of time. But making the eco-conscious choice can be as easy as not throwing away your fast fashion finds (and adding to staggering tons of non-biodegradable textile waste every year) the moment you’re bored or saturated, and choosing instead to give them another chic, new lifespan with you by upcycling with texture/embellishment/surface decoration, or even just cutting them off to ankle lengths and shorts or adding some rips and paint splatters, for that matter! I might be an FD student, but just so you know, there’s a hack for every level of lazy and uncreative any human could possibly be, and any of us can achieve it 🙂

A simple, achievable creation executed in a matter of an hour thanks to the quintessentially Indian privelege of having sidewalk set-up alteration tailors (although you could just as easily do it on a sewing machine at home if you sew). I’ve had these Vero Moda ankle lengths for ages, and also some scrap fabric left over from the stitching of a sequinned blouse, clearly too little to make another garment but pretty enough not to want to discard! There it is, sew on patches of sequin giving life to a boring old pair. I drew out a simple triangle (you could even make just a straight stripe) on the knee while wearing it for a guideline on exactly where I want it. Blingy, gilded kneecaps!

The purpose of eco-consciousness and sustainable fashion is lost the moment it becomes something unattainable, difficult to achieve or reserved only for the elite. Isn’t the disintegration of our ecology and environment due to careless consumerism something affecting us all, created by us all, and the responsibility of us all?

And of course, as Indians, I salute and commend our wonderful practice of truly living our clothes out by wearing them their original way, then wearing them again post-upcycling, then having younger members of the family wear them, followed by the needy or less priveleged entourage of maids, bartanwalas, kids of the dhobi, and so on, finally leading them to their final life cycle of kitchen pocha or katka (washcloth), floor pocha, or random vessel cover until complete disintegration. 

We sure know how to rock sustainability and minimal wastage!

There’s plenty of cheap, chic and easy upcycling hacks coming up soon, stay tuned for more!

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