Fashion Revolution Week

Blog Post

Its Fashion Revolution Week

Fashion Revolution Week is all about asking manufacturers, who made your clothes?

LOTS of clothing manufacturers are very unfair to factory workers, paying them penny’s for long hard gruelling days in awful condition, these places are known as “sweat shops”

On 24th April 2013 in Savar India an 8 story clothing factory collapsed and buried thousands of workers.
The search for the dead ended on 13 May 2013 with a death toll of 1,129. Approximately 2,500 injured people were rescued from the building alive.
Generations of families were wiped out in this disaster.
Hundreds of UK Manufacturers financially compensated the victims familys, some DID NOT.

This sad and horrific story was one of the reason I started Dolly’s. I wanted to go back to making great quality things BY HAND. Now I know you don’t learn the skills over night, but once you have them, you have them for life.

I recently had 1 to many “food medallions” on a plain white t-shirt. I decided to time myself making a new one. 35 minute, thats quicker than locking the shop up and going to find one I actually liked.

You may have seen the quote “Fast Fashion Isn’t Free Someone  Somewhere is paying for it”. The quote is from a cool journalist called Lucy Siegle. She even wrote a book about it, it is rather good.

There is also a great documentary on Netflix, you can see it here

Some real cool cats who have brought manufacturing to the UK are Hebtroco. Over a pint in 2015 Brant & Ed who live in Hebden Bridge decided to bring Trousers back to “Trouser Town”. Hebden Bridge was once a butting industrial town for manufacturing.
The guys business started with crowd funding, is growing from strength to strength. Often at Altrincham Market, I just Had to see if these trousers were worth all the hype. After all my most used saying is “I can make that”. I’ll just say the fly alone is worth the £110 the trousers cost, so much so Billy got 2 pairs.

Have a look in your clothes, get on social media and ask the question “Who Made Your Clothes?”

TTFN Love Linsey @Dolly’s

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Don’t Tell Them You Sew

Don’t Tell Them You Sew.

I know what its like, you’ve got this amazing new skill and you want to shout it from the roof tops. It never gets old that feeling when you say “I made It”, after all these years I still get that buzz.

but trust me……….. its a trap!!

You see, none sewers don’t know the ups and downs of sewing. I recently was told a story by a lovely lady who comes into the shop. Lets call her FRANK.
Frank and her neighbour were having tea in the garden, the neighbours son came home with a hole in his blazer. The neighbour asked Frank to repair it……….
What could possibly go wrong?
Well, pressing your beautiful repair with the iron to high, burning the said blazer and having to go and spend £40 on a replacement.
Thats what can go wrong.

When I first opened Dolly’s I was approached by someone who offered me the world for altering curtains, free advertising, a stall at market gate, breakfast with the Mayor. The things as a business owner money couldn’t buy.
Guess what, since he picked his curtains up I’ve never seen him since.
Another of Dolly’s regulars is doing alterations for friends and family. Great and a nice little earner you would think?
Think again, when a Donna Karen dress doesn’t fit as anticipated after alteration, your “friend” is taking you to the small claims court, because you’re “doing them a favour” you’re not insured for the mistake.

My Girl has spotted a prom dress she fancies its only £150 from china. I just couldn’t spend that amount of money on something that will be poorly made, not ethical, and a naff fit.
So I’m making her dress! (listen to your own advice Linsey) fabric  and notions alone have cost £210. £60 more that the ready to wear original. I’ve spent about 8 hours on it so far and its nowhere near complete.
This dress is a job made for love not money, but you can see where I’m coming from…….

Lovlies, Use your skills, Be proud of your skills, but be careful who you tell. 😉

TTFN Linsey @ Dolly’s

Use It Or Loose It

This week I heard the sad news that our neighbours Warrington Skate Academy was closing down. Now I am not sure of any of the details of the situation, but was infuriated with some of the Facebook comments.

“Why would you do this”

“This isn’t fair, my son loved it when he came 2 years ago”

“Its just selfish”

How many of these people actually went and spent a little of their had earned cash?

On Academy Street there were 4 now 3 Independent businesses, all struggling because of the redevelopment work, again today the road is closed for another 2 weeks!

It reminds me of the Just A Card campaign, check it out here

Its about a beautiful card shop, that had to close due to financial reasons, after the owners said:-

“If everyone who’d complimented our beautiful gallery had bought just a card we’d still be open.”

In Summer 2015 things were in a desperate situation at Dolly’s, The School Summer Holiday had been like a baron wasteland at the shop, in 6 weeks, not 1 customer through the door.

I just simply didn’t have any money for rent. I had no choice but to ask for help. I launched “A Tip For A Tip”

Everyday I am thankful for all those lovely people who donated and kept me in business.

Thankfully Dolly’s is in a much better place now, I still havn’t taken a wage for 2 years, but Dolly’s now has its regulars, its a social place, and the love of sewing is growing within our area. Exactly what I wanted.

Dolly’s will never make me rich, but it will defiantly make my life richer.

I think it is important to shop local especially in Warrington  during the redevelopment.

So instead of taking to Facebook when an independent business has closed down, lets support them whilst they are still open.

Use It Or Loose It.

TTFN Linsey @Dolly’s xx