Millennials Don't Know Shit About Clothing Care

Another day, another study on how clueless we millennial types are. Today: GenY (or the iGen 6) does not possess clothing repair skills like sewing, hemming, button repair, nor do we possess general knowledge of laundry. Guys, how will we stitch the torn world back together and re-hem the mistakes of our forefathers if we can’t darn a fucking sock?

Research published in Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal by Pamela Norum, a professor in the Department of Textile and Apparel Management in the MU College of Human Environmental Sciences, has found that baby boomers know way more about clothing care than 18-33 year olds.

Given that 1) schools are cutting classes like home economics, 2) we (manufacture and therefore) buy cheap and easily disposable clothing that’s not supposed to last more than a season 3) women’s roles at home and at the workplace has undergone and continues to undergo a huge shift and 4) we consider clothing care skills as a craft or a hobby (thanks Etsy) rather than an important life skill, this makes all the sense in the world. Via Science Daily:

“In 2012, Americans created more than 14.3 million tons of textile waste,” Norum said. “Much of this waste is due to clothes being discarded due to minor tears or stains-easily repairable damages if the owners have the skills and knowledge to fix them. If we, as a nation, want to move toward more sustainable practices in all aspects, we need to evaluate not only how we take care of our clothes, but how we educate younger generations to do so as well.”

When I was a kid, I’d say about 10% of my wardrobe was handmade by my grandmother, who ran a home science school for girls in Sri Lanka. And my mom could definitely pull some quick stitches (and alter a sari blouse) if she needed to. Technically I can thread a needle and put it through cloth without drawing blood, but yeah, the most I, um, edit clothing is when I pull the tag off of a new shirt.

Norum suggests using fashion blogs and sites like Pinterest to draw inspiration about repurposing clothing and improving clothing care skills, though we all know what happens when we try to emulate Pinterest.

Oh damn, it just hit me. The reason why the “distressed” look is so in is because literally no one knows how to fix their clothing.

Image via Getty.

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