If you are in the costume or fashion industry and haven't heard of FABSCRAP, let me introduce you.
FABSCRAP is a fabric recycling shop that not only will take your mockups, scraps, extra bolts, etc. and recycle them, They will sell you fabric by the yard, by the patch, in scrap bags from area designers who no longer need their excess fabric. Before the pandemic you could even go to their warehouse, volunteer to sort, and walk away with some beautiful fabric as a thank you.
Now, it is a bit harder to do this, but they still accept volunteers, have sign up for in store shopping, and the thing I'm most excited about is, online shopping! I don't currently have a project, but the fabrics currently up online make me want to think something up so I can order some.
Learn more about FABSCRAP and their mission or shop for your next at home quarantine project.
*No partnership or pay from this blog. I just am really excited about FABSCRAP and want other eco-conscious designers, fabric enthusiasts, at home sewers, teachers, students, etc. to know about them!
More and more events and public gatherings have been canceled or postponed indefinitely thanks to Covid-19. The MET Gala 2020 is one of these events that has been postponed. The gala raises funds for the museum and Costume Institute each spring. Although they will be forgoing that revenue in May, I believe it is in the best interest of the public for the gala and many events like it to be postponed. No one has given further details about when the Gala may be rescheduled (as of writing this blog according to CNN), so may I throw a few ideas out there for the organizers to ponder in response to the current situation.
Now, these ideas are not entirely my originals; many others have voiced opinions on how funds to create designs, food, themes should be otherwise allocated. Others have suggested how themes should be created to mirror current world or environmental crisis. I think there is a way to combine many of these different ideas to create a truly celebratory gathering once we all emerge from our social distancing.
Firstly, I put forward for your consideration, a new theme. One that addresses the climate crisis, fosters a creative mindset, and would potentially allow funds that were going to be used to purchase materials, etc to be allocated to charities or those in the industry who are out of work because of Covid-19. I propose that all designers who participate in creating extravagant looks for the MET Gala use off cuts, old findings, re-purposed pieces, etc to create their brand new looks. They could even used recyclable items in their creations. It would be a ReNEWed MET Gala. Some in fashion are trying to champion slow fashion or sustainable fashion; a fashion-centric event such as the MET Gala would be a great way to bring more in the industry on board.
As a by-product of no new materials being sourced or produced, money that might have been used for such items could then be donated to either climate crisis prevention OR those in the fashion and entertainment industry who lost jobs because of our currently needed isolation practices. Many in fashion, film, and theatre are not the big names you see on labels or posters, they are the stage hands, stitchers, and office workers who work behind the scenes to make the end products you see. They can not work from home so they have been jobless through no fault of their own.
As I mentioned earlier, many have expressed similar ideas and wishes for the 2020 gala. Although I understand there are always operating costs, technicalities, and logistics that must be sorted out, I feel these are a good starting point. It is a path we as creatives should strive to take. Fashion and entertainment are used in their best sense to foster understanding, appreciation, and discovery. By recycling, reusing, and renewing past gala pieces and by using funds to help support those in the industry, we can come together on the first Monday of <Insert Month Here> to celebrate all of our contributions in our society.
As of March 1st 2020, plastic bags are banned (with some exceptions) in New York State. In NYC there is also going to be a 5 cent fee for paper bags. Some businesses like Beacon's Closet (save the planet and thrift!) have already enacted this fee. As someone who has lived in other countries that also banned plastic/enacted a fee, I am pleased the place I currently call home is following suit. As someone who works in the costume industry, I am interested to see how this effects shopping for garments and fabric.
I currently have many reusable bags myself as I have been trying to reduce my impact on the environment for a while. I have some very large bags and varying other sizes I constantly use to tote around costumes, lunch, groceries, etc. I don't find it hard to keep at least one bag with me constantly, but for people like shoppers in the film and television industry, I can't imagine how many empty bags they will be required to carry with them at the start of their day.
Some stores like:
and some stores such as:
I am looking forward to see what will happen in the coming months once the ban is enacted. My hope, and I think the hope of those that passed it is to lessen the plastic NYC (and the rest of the state) uses on a daily basis. I hope that the reusable bags are indeed used and don't start littering our streets like the plastic ones they are meant to be replacing.