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byKatyMac - #IDontDoNew

I’m Kate an Eco-Designer of Slow Fashion, my business is ‘byKatyMac’ - vintage & pre-loved household fabrics used to create occasion wear and wedding dresses; minimising impact for the planet

Creating wearable clothing from recycled/reclaimed fabric for adults and children


My Grandmother and Mother taught me to sew, then high school put me off, so I stopped for a bit.

When I got my own home, I made curtains, bedding and quilt covers and attempted upholstery. When my daughter started school the dreaded ‘World Book Day’ appeared, and I become ‘known’ in the village for creating costumes out of what you already have. Fancy dress was big in my world.


Then dance classes started, and costumes became more glittery - Bling was reluctantly my thing!

Time passed, and recycling/upcycling and being greener were in the centre of my thoughts; so now ‘byKatyMac’ creates clothing and accessories out of discarded and recycled fabric.


I cycle to the shops on my electric bike and buy discarded household fabrics (curtains, tablecloths, bedding and tea-towels) from charity shops.

Then using my solar powered sewing machine (well it’s solar powered when the sun shines) I make new items of clothing adding recycled/reclaimed and gifted trims, zips, buttons and bias-binding; I use new thread, as older thread can be fragile and unreliable, and baby poppers as you can’t reuse them. Although I have just found recycled thread which is exciting.


Haberdashery is my joy and my nemesis, I love it but I won’t buy new, so finding the right colour zip or buttons that work well, can be tricky.  I popped into a café one day to be presented with a large box of haberdashery, someone I had met there weeks before – didn’t know who I was and wanted to give me her mum’s sewing bits to reuse;  so she had dropped them off at the café in the hope that I would return - I was over whelmed.

I wrap the clothes in recycled tissue paper (from dress patterns) and place in a new posting bag for safety - but the bag can be recycled at most supermarkets. Then I cycle to the post office and post it.


I try to be as green/sustainable/environmental/carbon free as possible; using as few new or purchased items as possible. I also try to tell people where the recycled items have come from.


I encourage people to take joy in the sustainable steps they can take however big or small and to refuse to feel guilt to what they can’t do.  Anything positive is excellent.