Tuesday 11 August 2020
  • Design Technology
  • Age 9-11 (KS2)
    Age 11-14 (KS3)

These days buying vintage or second hand clothes, and making adjustments to clothes that are already in your wardrobe, has become more and more popular as folks try to be more eco-friendly. Of course this isn’t new, mending and taking care of our clothes has been around for centuries – and became very important during the Second World War!



Part of the Family Mission series created during the UK lockdown in Spring 2020.

Have a rummage through your wardrobe – is there anything that you might throw out that you could mend or alter? Here’s some of our ideas and top tips for taking care of your clothes. You’ll need to work with sharp objects so make sure you have an adult to help you:

  1. Improve your “cutting skills” with an adult. Take a pair of sharp scissors and see if you can turn an old or torn pair of trousers or jeans into shorts by cutting the legs on the trousers.
  2. Get sewing! Boy Scouts had to learn to sew by patching and mending their clothes, from sewing back on buttons to closing holes in their socks.
  3. Clothes swaps! Get together with your friends and swap the clothes you no longer wear or want – you might find some gems in your friends unwanted clothes!
  4. Check the labels! Take good care of your clothes by reading the care labels and following the instructions when washing and ironing your clothes.
  5. Add something! Jazz up some tired clothes with bows and buttons for extra detail around waists or collars.

Explore Further

Thumbnaiil make do and mend

Explore Further

During the Second World War, the government encouraged people to ‘Make Do and Mend’.

Watch IWM curator Michelle explain how this worked and see clips from a 1943 short film that was created to show people how to repair, reuse and reimagine their existing clothes

Watch now >

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