Let me welcome you to the Shwop & Sew Lab, which will be opened on 19th and 20th June in our Bristol Broadmead store, as part of Bristol BIG Green Week 2015.
2015 is a very exciting year for Bristol, having been chosen as the UK’s first European Green Capital. This makes Bristol BIG Green Week, the local annual festival of sustainability, bigger and better and M&S cannot miss being a part of it!
We have been sponsoring the festival for four years, and last year organised the Bristol Big Shwop Challenge, with over 10,000 items collected. This year, we’re still shwopping, but we’re also looking at how to make clothes last longer. Quality and durability are built into all M&S clothes, and so we want to show Bristolians that with a little skill, they can make any of their clothes last even longer.
The call to action is simple: have you got something you love, but it has seen better days, or it’s missing a button or has a fallen hem? No problem, come and learn to breathe a new lease of life into them in our pop-up sewing studio. We’re offering free classes, from simple button hand sewing, to iron-on tape trouser shortening, to altering an old t-shirt into something you’ll love wearing. Customers and visitors will get a chance to meet and get advice from celebrity sewists, like the recent winner of BBC2’s Great British Sewing Bee, Matt Chapple and previous finalist Tamara Melvin. We are also teaming up with local Bristol sewing schools, so those interested can continue sewing after the studio closes.
For those who decide to give a second life to their clothes by donating them to a good cause, we will have shwop boxes in the Broadmead store, as well as Cribbs Causeway and Longwell Green. Every person who donates clothing will receive a £5 off £35 voucher to be spent in store. All clothes will be passed on to Oxfam, who will resell, reuse or recycle to support their good work where it’s most needed.
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