I am a big fan of Zoe of the blog 'So, Zo.....what do you know?'. She is a very talented sewist/refashionista and has lots of measured thoughts that I can completely relate to. She recently posted about her purchases of 2nd hand shoes (see here), which made me thing of how I consume as well.
I love sewing, thrifting, and refashioning for myself, my family and my house. I haven't shopped for brand new clothes and shoes for a long time (just a couple of slip ups) and this year, I have pledged not to buy 2nd hand clothes/shoes unless I/my family actually need them. It hasn't been difficult at all; it's not like there was a period when I was craving to shop at the malls. I just adapted to it naturally.
My hubby and my kids don't know or care that they wear home-made/home-refashioned/2nd hand clothes. My kids love the 2nd hand books and toys I got them. They don't bug us to buy new things for them when we go to the malls because we rarely buy anything in front of them (except groceries). I use homemade olive oil/coconut oil/beeswax cream for our family's skin care (see here for recipe). And I started washing my hair only with water (no shampoo/conditioner/gel/spray/etc) after reading about it on Meggipeg's blog (her hair is gorgeous!).
I don't think of myself as an early adapter of any trends. I rarely talk about my sewing/refashioning/thrifting/homemade creams because my family, friends and acquaintances don't react kindly to it. They often think of me as some cheapo-crazy-treehugger-radical. Or they think I was disapproving their consumption habits when I talk enthusiastically about something I made. I made the mistake of talking about the 'magic' of using a water/apple cider/olive oil mixture to detangle my toddler's tangly hair and just had the other mom roll her eyes at me (she was endorsing this tiny bottle of $40 all natural ingredients detangler for her kids). I just wish that I could find another suburban mom like me in my town (somewhere within 10 km!! LOL!) who shares my passion of sewing/crafting/thrifting/making your own skin care and hair care products, and the curiosity for alternative ways to make a less-toxic life for ourselves and our kids. Perhaps I need to start a local mom group myself?
I think we living in the west think buying something will solve any of our issue/need/want. I'm trying to break away from that. When I go walking in the malls for exercise with my toddler (it's snowy and windy outside 6 months of the year), I actually love going into the higher end stores and look at the underworkings of the jackets, dresses and pants in case I want to copy them (yea the sales assistants were rolling their eyes at me - LOL)! And I like looking at the windows at H&M and Forever 21 to see how they put their outfits together. I take pictures so that I can put together something similar from my closet. I don't feel bad going to shopping centres at all.
Sorry about the rant! Sometimes it feels a bit lonely just doing all these 'wacky' projects by myself and no one to share this with face to face. When I go to the local thrift store or the fabric store, I'm surrounded by seniors and the rare student. So if you also like sewing/crafting/thrifting/making your own creams, give me a holler!