Salford upcycling clothes

A Salford activist is encouraging people to upcycle their unworn clothes through sewing workshops at Islington Mill.

Charlotte Keyworth-Clarke, a former Salford University student, runs upcycling workshops in Salford to inspire and encourage people to reuse old clothes that would otherwise end up in landfill.

All the materials Charlotte has to make into something new.
Copyright: Zoe Bott

Mrs Keyworth-Clarke said: “I do my sewing classes to inspire people to reuse and rework whatever clothes they’ve got.”

She has always had a passion for secondhand clothing as from a young age she was going to charity shops and car boot sales to find clothing that she could turn into something different.

She said: “When you’ve got something secondhand, it’s unique and good for the planet.”

Fast fashion is a common term now in the UK. Online shopping has meant more clothes are being bought, but even more clothes are being thrown away.

Government studies show that Brits are buying more clothes than any other country in Europe with nearly £140 million worth of clothing going to landfill each year.

This has drastic consequences on our environment as on average 7,000 litres of water are used to produce one pair of jeans.

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Mrs Keyworth-Clarke also makes her own products out of old material and clothes that she has picked up to sell at festivals and through her store The Junk Shop

Made by Charlotte with different materials.
Image credit: Zoe Bott

To combat the current fast-fashion crisis many fashion brands are creating and encouraging sustainable clothing including Salford-based In The Style which promotes itself as a sustainable brand.

It works with the ReGa app which offers discount coupons in return for unwanted clothes. The Salford firm also works with the Marine Conservation Society, as it donates 1p per purchase.

Sustainable fashion is growing but all new clothing uses precious resources.

Mrs Keyworth-Clarke said: “The best thing to do is to buy secondhand. It doesn’t matter if it made from sustainable material such as bamboo or anything as, yes that’s a great step and organic, but the problem is that it still natural resources.”

She encourages people to get involved in upcycling their clothes and learning to sew, so keep a lookout for her next workshop at Islington Mill, Salford.

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