Wow, so this is it then.
The last official blog post of My Make Do and Mend Year.
365 days, 368 posts, 17.5k tweets (Really? Is that even possible? Have I spent the last year constantly tweeting? Oh yes. Pretty much…) and 3,832 follower of various descriptions.
I have to confess to being at a bit of a loss for what to say, how to sum up the whole year in one post, without it turning into an Oscar speech. And I feel under pressure to make it in someway profound..
So, to start, I am going to interview myself, posing some of most frequently asked questions I have encountered in the last few weeks…
Q. Are you going on a massive spending spree tomorrow?
A. No. I guess we all know somewhere at the back of our minds, that fast fashion and the consumerism of the Western world is a Bad Thing, but I for one, always managed to conveniently forget that when we *needed* something pre MMDAMY. Now I don’t feel that I could go back to the sort of mindless consuming we used to do.
Q. What will be the first New thing you will buy?
A. Pants. Or maybe a bra (although have yet to find anything bra-wise from an ethical manufacturer that I like)
Q. Hardest thing?
A. Christmas was inevitably hard work, and then probably trying to find some boots (read Bloody Boots if you have no idea what I’m on about…!) But actually, the whole year has been far easier than I thought it would be.
Q. What have you missed most?
A. As shallow as it sounds, magazines. I was pretty addicted to all those lovely craft magazines like Mollie Makes, but I am not sure if I will go back to buying them. Maybe the download version? Is that more sustainable…?!
Q. What next?
A. I honestly don’t know. A break from blogging for a bit. I am all blogged out for now. But I will carry on Making Do and Mending, and buying nothing new, and I will continue to blog, after a break! My book proposal and 2 sample chapters are written, and have been e-mailed to a couple of people, so watch this space…!
Last night I went to watch The Clean Bin Project, about a brilliant couple who spent a year buying NOTHING (not just nothing new) and throwing nothing away too. It is a fabulous film, funny and accessible and it gets it’s message across without preaching. It made me question whether by *only* buying nothing new, I have done enough or really achieved anything. But I was chatting to Jen (of Clean Bin Project fame. Yes, I hang with film stars…) and she commented that buying secondhand was something that was achievable for everyone. And I hope that is what I have managed to convey with the blog. Buying secondhand takes you out of the Supply and Demand chains for fast fashion and cheap consumer goods. It removes the instant fix of buying something new to replace something that is broken or tired, as it inevitably takes a bit more time and effort to find what you want, so it makes you much more mindful of what you really need/want. It forces you to be a more ethical consumer. And it is EASY!
The year has not been one of deprivation, and scrimping and going without.
It has been a year of creativity and challenges, and has pushed me out of my comfort zone. And it has, above all else, been FUN!
My aim has always been to inspire, to show people how easy it can be. That you can make small, achievable steps that make a difference, and that just by taking one small step, it empowers you to take one more, and one more after that.
The take home message for me is that this, this blog, this life even, is all about taking responsibility for the choices that we make.
If you want cheap clothes more than you want a world where someone else’s child hasn’t had to work in a sweatshop to make them for you; if you want the latest phone/computer/gadget more than you want a planet that has some resources left for the next generation; if you can’t be bothered to do your recycling and don’t care that we are running out of landfill or that there is now more plastic in our oceans than there is plankton, then go ahead.
But just know that you are making a choice that has consequences. Not just for you, but for every other person on this planet. And for the generations to come.
I know I keep saying this, but an individuals, we can only do what we can do. Never mind what everyone else is or isn’t doing. That is their business, their life, and their choices.
I have made my choice. I want my kids to be able to enjoy the same quality of life that I have. I don’t know if that is possible with the way the planet is headed. But I have made my choice to do all that I can. And then one more thing.
I hope you have all enjoyed reading. I hope that maybe even a few of you will have been inspired to make some changes in your own lives to make them more sustainable, to consume more mindfully. That is all I want. I am not expecting everyone to go out and buy nothing new ever again, but just to hopefully be more mindful consumers.
Thankyou so much for reading, for leaving comments, for spurring me on, for supporting me (and well dome if you have made it to the end of this mammoth post!)