Totally Smitten With Green Issues by Agy

Agy is a champion of eco-design. The eclectic collection of environmentally friendly projects on her Green Issues blog are an amazing example of what can be achieved with imagination, ingenuity & the contents of a recycling bin!

“Our world has become a very consumerist throw-away society (just look at the number of malls!). My goal is to spread the message that you don’t have to buy something new, and you shouldn’t throw something away without thinking about what it could be turned into – you can refashion your existing clothes or patronise your local thrift stores to buy pre-loved goods, and even make simple gifts from recyclable items. Old t-shirts and jeans can be turned into bags or slippers!” (photo credit: National Environment Agency, Singapore)

Get to know this clever (re)creator and discover her top thrifting & refashioning tips:

“This Resort Chic Wrap was created for an upcycling / refashioning initiative organised by (The Academy of Fashion Professions) and the Singapore Committee for UN Women. Participants would refashion end-of-season garments that would then be sold with the proceeds benefiting the campaign End Violence Against Women. “

Initially a friend and I started the site as a “green blog” to try to get the community more aware about environmental issues. After a year or so, my friend left the blog and I found myself focusing more on upcycling, particularly clothing.

“One of my fave ways to wear my upcycled & refashioned skirt – I am a fan of boat-necked tops! Basically, the left and right arms stick out of the top and bottom of the skirt, respectively.”

The a-ha moment really came after I gave birth (pregnancy does things to your brain!) and was going through my wardrobe – I had so much stuff! I love to create things so it was great that I was combining two passions – the environment and sewing.

“Warning – making these upcycled eyeglass lens pendants can get very addictive!”

I now share my passion of refashioning with the community in Singapore, and it’s been a pretty exciting journey so far.

“Here’s a tribal necklace made from lanyards, wire and embroidery thread.”

Agy’s Top 5 Thrifting & Refashioning Tips:

1. I love colours so I always look for colourful prints/garments in the thrift store. It’s great to have colours when you are living in a sunny country like I do.

2. If you are a beginner refashionista I would recommend starting off with easy alterations first such as shortening or lengthening garments, and using fabrics that are easier to sew (e.g. jersey, t-shirts, cargo). These don’t require too much sewing work, and you can easily envision what the end product will look like. Once you have tackled these, you can start experimenting and go onto more complex refashions!

3. Always be patient! If a refashion fails, don’t throw it away. You might get further inspiration a week, a month or even a year later.

4. Know your fabric – type, properties and how well it can be manipulated. I used t-shirt material for some frills, and did not realise that after washing the garment, I would have a huge ironing exercise to get out all the wrinkles. The refashion looked nice, but the ironing was horrible (not to mention all that energy wasted!)

5. Experiment with different techniques – refashioning does not necessarily mean using needle and thread. For example you can transform a garment simply by using fabric paint or even LED lights!

Cheers to Agy for sharing her story and thrifty advice!

Take a scroll through Green Issues by Agy and snag some upcycling inspiration!

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