As I got so many nice reactions to my story on Instagram a few days back, where I showed the labels that I had received, I thought it would be nice to tell a little more about them in a blogpost.

Klein Kapitalistisch Verzet

…it says on the label, meaning “small resistance against capitalism”, or “a little bit of resistance against capitalism”. Why did I choose this?

Well actually, it took some time for me to order them. I started knitting my first  garments in the end of last summer, so late-summer 2018. Before that, I used to buy mostly second-hand clothing, but I wanted to take it a step further, by setting the challenge not to buy any piece of newly produced clothing in the year 2019, and only to buy second-hand pieces if I really need them, and I cannot make it by myself.

Earlier on, I knitted the Vintersol Sweater and this year started off with a Whinfell Sweater. However.. in the start of 2019, three of my pants broke within two weeks, and even though I had learned to repair clothing as much as possible, I realized it was not really an option with these pants. These pants were all old, thin and worn out. The fabric had gotten so thin between the legs that a repairment would’t solve the problem, as the pants would just break on other places. Suddenly, I had not so much left, and thus I had to make some new pants.

I never sewed pants before, but I found some easy to sew pants in Burda. See the result here. As I love rusty orange, I also found an sewing pattern in one of my mum’s old Dutch sewing magazines, Knipmode, from November 2013. See them here.

I saw some people with their own clothes labels here and there, but most of these people have their own name or brand on it. As I don’t have a brand, and my own name to sew in my clothing reminds me too much of primary school, where children got their names in their jackets to make sure that they would not loose them, or to show teachers which jacket is whose, I wanted to go for something else. The question I asked myself was “Why am I doing this?” Well basically, I do this, because I would like to see a major system change. I would like to see ethically produced clothing, I would like to see the end of fast fashion, the end of exploitations and I want good working conditions.

I am aware of the fact that making my own clothes does not change anything in the system. My major motivation of making the clothing myself is thus also to go back myself, to the bottom, to see how much hours there are to be put in a single garment. It’s a tiny bit of resistance against the fast fashion exploitational system, which is a result of this current capitalist system we are in. I want to make myself aware of the time and space appropriation were are carrying out with our current economic model. Read more abut the time-space appropriation within the textile industry here.

“Klein verzet” is a term I would connect to war, as people secretly resisted against, for example, Nazi occupation in the Second World War. Small, hidden resistance in everyday practices, to secretly (but sometimes effectively) thwart occupation and its practises. Besides this, I found a book by Tine Hens with the name “Klein Verzet“, in which questions are being asked about what the world would look like after capitalism. I have to be honest that I have not read it – yet, but I should. I would say that some have started a secret war against this current economic model. We have to make sure we will not depoliticize this fight against the consumption-driven model by making it a private responsability, as I explained in a previous post, so we need to get the conversation going.

I would like to conclude for today with a few important matters to remember, and some ideas for further reading:

  • Recyling is not an excuse to keep on buying – Read here why.
  • Organic clothing is not necessarily better – Read more here.
  • Organic clothing does not say anything about the working conditions under which the cloth(es) is/are being produced.

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