Handmade clothes used to be associated with only haute couture. They are gaining popularity as they people become more aware of the advantages at a personal level and for the environment as well. Clothes made by hand are unique and exclusive, and stand out among the trend-driven, machine made clothes. Besides, clothes stitched are more transparent-you know where the raw materials are derived from, the working conditions and so on. Check out these reasons for choosing handmade clothes over machine made ones:
10 Reasons to choose handmade clothes
1. Better quality fabrics
Handmade clothing is an investment. The clothing is durable and can be easily mended, and does not have to be disposed off after just one season, or due to some tear. The fabrics used in handmade clothes are chosen carefully, and you have a say in the choice of fabric. Many companies which make their clothes with the hand, choose fabrics which are eco-friendly, such as hand-loomed silk and wool, which have no emissions or use of electricity and water. Moreover, they do not require toxic chemicals to process them.
Synthetic fibres such as polyester are very harmful for the environment, so when you choose to buy natural fabric, you would be supporting the environment. Handmade pieces of clothing are meant to be worn for a long time, which reduces the need to buy many pieces of clothing, thus reducing the demand for clothes which are produced in huge quantities. Garments factories are one of the leading polluters, and consumers’ demand increases production, thus creating a negative impact for the surroundings of the factories.
2. You can upcyle your own clothes
You may be having good quality silk and woollen clothes but the design is passé. You can redesign them to transform them into beautiful new garments for you and your family. Many designers also upcycle clothes, which means less raw material is produced. Upcycle your silk gowns, shirts and other clothes, even heirloom pieces to create clothes that are stylish and trendy. This is another reason why handmade garments are better than machine clothes.
3. Exclusive style and design
Handmade garments are produced in limited quantities, or sometimes just one piece of a particular design is made. This makes your clothes stand out and noticed. The craftsmanship quality too is impeccable, which will definitely satisfy your craving to wear a beautiful, artistically designed garment. You will not come across anyone wearing the same piece of clothing everywhere you go! Handmade clothes are therefore the perfect choice for those who like to wear something different.
4. Handmade garments are custom sized
It must have happened to you, as it has to many women when you buy machine made, mass produced clothes – they just don’t fit. If you buy clothes online, it is a long and weary process to return and then get a refund. If you buy another garment, that too may not fit well. In the case of handmade clothes, you get your money’s worth, as every garment is custom made. Those who make handmade clothing are savvy enough to stitch your clothes in a way that the fitting is just right.
5. Deadstock fabrics find a use
Leftover or deadstock fabrics are the fabrics which are left over from other design houses which were not used. Instead of these fabrics ending up as waste, the deadstock fabrics are used by design houses which make beautiful clothing out of them. This reduces waste as well as the negative impact on environment. Thus, handmade clothes are a sustainable choice.
6. Manufacturing process is eco-friendly
Machine made clothes are mass produced in huge factories, and use up an enormous amount of energy. The process leads to the production of greenhouse gases and toxic wastes, which pollute the atmosphere and the surrounding waterways. There have been many instances when the local people suffer from many diseases due to the atmospheric and waterbody pollution. But handmade clothes are made sustainable, without any emissions of any kind, which is better for the environment.
7. Natural colors
Commercial clothing use industrial dyes which are highly toxic. The colors which are attained as the end result are bright and eye-catching but the process is too damaging to the environment, as the chemicals are dumped into rivers and lakes during manufacturing.
Handmade articles of clothing are also colourful and beautiful, but the dyes used are derived from plant extracts. Industrial dyes which are non-toxic are not harmful to people working with them or to the environment.
When we buy factory produced clothes, we have no idea as to the sourcing of the raw material, as well as the working conditions of the workers in the factories. Many workers in developing countries are not paid fair-trade wages.
When you choose handmade pieces, you can choose the fabric, know where it is sourced from, and also are aware of the working conditions of the workers, which is usually better than those working in commercial factories.
The higher price of handmade garments is due to the organic/eco-friendly raw material, and the higher wages which are paid to the workers.
9. Packaging and labels
Handmade garment manufacturers/companies/boutiques also ensure that their packaging, clothing tags and labels are also green, and made from recycled paper and fabric. This makes handmade garments eco-friendly from start to finish.
Most handmade garments are made from premium textiles such as silk, wool, linen and organic cotton. These fabrics are soft on the skin as well as non-allergenic. Natural fabrics are breathable, and so do not trap moisture and heat. This will make you feel comfortable in cool and hot temperatures, sweat less and look good. Fabrics such as baby alpaca are used, which do not have lanolin, a wool grease which causes allergy in many people. People who are sensitive to certain fabrics can choose handmade garments as these will not cause any allergy.
Handmade garments do cost more than commercially produced clothes as the whole process involved is very labor intensive and each garment takes a lot of time to be made. Besides, the designs are unique, fabrics are premium and produced in an eco-friendly manner which adds to the cost. Handmade garments are an investment, and you can redesign each garment every few years according to your taste and style.