Remember the Slow Fashion exhibition I mentioned earlier this month? Throughout the exhibition duration, they also held side events every weekend—fair crafts workshops/live demos, ethical fashion talkshows, the works—and I managed to catch the last one before the closing: a swap party! It was held on Saturday—around 2 weeks ago—Dia.Lo.Gue art space. My sister and I had to arrive there late because she had to work. At first, I didn't know what the norms were—if we would still be allowed to swap some clothes by then—but it was soon clear that we could still join in. The system works like this: we register our names and items that we brought to the people in charge, who will check if our items were still okay and give us tokens to use as tools to swap clothes, then we lay out our clothes on the available tables so everyone can take a look and decide if they want to take our stuff in exchange for their own. My sister and I scored two awesome "new" items, in exchange for the two we let go. It was definitely worth the usually tedious weekend traffic!
|The items I get from the swap party|
Sis's top // swapped cardigan // thrifted skirt + sandals // KABOKI macramé purse // photos by Akita
Now, four years ago, I'd gone to another swap party back in Kassel—that was the first one I've ever been a part of. This cardigan was the loot I managed to score from that little event; it used to belong to my classmate and I think her Grandma knitted it—or maybe I'm imagining details. And I can't help but to compare this event with the previous one. First of all, this one seems to have the get-in-swap-get-out kind of method—they didn't provide refreshments, lounging area or even music—it was held at a café, so there's music and food, but not from the event. It's understandable, of course, since this is a volunteer-based event to encourage people to shop less. But because of that system, I didn't manage to learn the story behind the pieces I acquired. We were encouraged to write down our stories and attach it to the clothes, apparently—my sister said she read it somewhere—but it wasn't as effective, I believe, to really create a connection with the clothes and the prior owners.