Love Patchwork & Quilting


As co-founder of FeelGood Fibers, Kim Smith Soper is passionate about sharing ways to be more mindful and responsibl­e with our fabric choices

- lelandaves­ lelandaves­tudios

As co-founder of FeelGood Fibers, Kim Smith Soper shares her sound advice for making more mindful fabric choices to save the planet

There is so much gorgeous quilting fabric in the world. New lines of colourful prints come out every season… we want to buy (and touch)

it all! But it’s also important to think about the effect our fabric choices have on the earth. When we add up all of our fabric purchases together, it has a huge impact. The good news is that when we all come together to change our habits for the better, we can make a positive shift in our world. How awesome is that?

Five ways to start today: REUSE

Shopping second-hand is the perfect way to score deals on fabrics that are in great shape but no longer wanted by the original owner. What no longer fits someone else’s aesthetic can be your good fortune!

Why it helps: By buying used, you are saving the earth’s precious resources required to make a new piece of fabric. In particular, it helps reduce the vast amount of water and energy that is needed to produce cotton fabric.


Repurposed fabrics are those you already have in your home that you can transform into quilting and garment projects – rather than sending them to landfill. Think: shirts that you love but aren’t in good enough shape to donate, tablecloth­s that have stains on them or jeans that no longer fit. Simply cut out the worn parts of the fabric and use the rest to incorporat­e into a quilt or try overdyeing for a unique effect! As an alternativ­e, taking time to repair a worn item makes a statement. It says, “I care enough to use my valuable time to keep this item in use, rather than throwing it away.” Pretty powerful, isn’t it?

Why it helps: It’s so important to keep cotton fabric out of landfill whenever possible. It is estimated that the average consumer throws away a whopping 70 pounds (31.75kg) of clothing per year! Globally, an estimated 92 million tons of textile waste is created yearly. By 2030, that total is expected to rise to 134 million tons of textile waste per year!


Organic quilt fabric lines are growing, as more manufactur­ers opt to lighten their environmen­tal footprint with sustainabl­e fabrics. Great news for us, as organic cotton is grown without toxic pesticides and uses low-impact dyes. Why it helps: When you purchase GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) organic fabric and fibres, these products must adhere to strict protocols that include how the fibres are grown and processed, and how workers in the production supply chain are treated.


Renewable resources are plant-based and can be regrown relatively quickly, using a limited number of chemicals. When it comes to batting, for example, bamboo is a hardy, renewable grass grown with fewer chemicals.

Why it helps: While we should aim to choose these fabrics whenever possible, it’s still best to buy less and buy secondhand before buying new. The processes that turn these plants into fabric are not without their flaws.

5 MAKE DO...

If you’ve ever been working on a project, checked your stash for fabric, and thought “I have nothing that works”, then you’ve had a ‘make-do’ moment.

Why it helps: By skipping the trip to the fabric shop, your project might just turn out better than you ever could have imagined! Sometimes putting limits on ourselves forces us to stretch ourselves in new, creative ways that we never thought possible. A double win!

If we choose to make conscious changes to our habits, we really can make a difference. We don’t have to change everything at once – start small with one project, and over time our collective eco-friendly actions will create the change we want to see in the world.

 ??  ?? Making informed choices about the fabrics we use really will start to make a global difference
Making informed choices about the fabrics we use really will start to make a global difference
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 ??  ?? By changing our mindsets to embrace preloved and recycled we can bring a real boost to our creativity
By changing our mindsets to embrace preloved and recycled we can bring a real boost to our creativity

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