Image from hereI'm so over the high street.
Last weekend I decided to go shopping for a denim skirt - I've got a gap in my wardrobe for a plain, casual skirt and thought I would treat myself rather than making one. I tried on a few and eventually bought one, but later returned it to the shop. Ok, it was just a denim skirt, but the experience summed up everything I felt about high street clothing. The fit wasn't great, the quality of the item was so-so and it just didn't feel worth the price, which wasn't even very high.
Since January, without even consciously trying, I've only bought the following clothing items from the high street:
2 pairs of shoes (Clarks & TK Maxx)
1 pair of sandals (TK Maxx)
1 Dress (Monsoon sale)
2 pairs of leggings (Primark)
Plus tights and pants from Marks & Spencer.
I just find it hard to get excited about the high street shops I used to go in to. Partly this is because I feel that most of the items aren't worth the money - either too expensive for what they consist of (simple patterns, poor quality material) or too cheap so I know they will fall apart and not last. I also am fundamentally uncomfortable with the voracious consumerism our society encourages and am very aware of the dubious origins of much of the clothing that is readily and cheaply available for sale.
Now I have started to make my own clothes I have much higher expectations of clothing - I want it to fit, I want it to last and I want to love it. (Hey, how's that for a mantra?)
I had thought that I would be able to buy the odd high street item, particularly things I'm not so excited about making, like plain skirts and tops. However I don't think I can. When I tried on the denim skirt at home I admitted to myself that it didn't fit how I wanted it to, and I wasn't very excited about it. So, now I'm going to have a go at making a denim skirt myself. I'm sure I've got the skills, but I have so many things I want to make that it's a question of finding time.
I'm not saying that I will never shop on the high street again - Clarks and TK Maxx will remain firm favourites, and I don't ever see myself trying to make a pair of jeans. However I much prefer to rummage through charity shops and vintage stores and of course, make my own clothes when I can.
How do you feel about high street fashion? Do you embrace it? Shun it? Allow it into your wardrobe in limited quantities?
Do you try to be sustainable and buy from ethical brands? If so you might be interested in this post by Kristen of KristenMakes who had made sustainability a focus in her MA studies in Fashion & Textile design.
Have a good weekend