The Convertibles invite children aged 3 onwards to make their own clothes by sewing together modular knitted panels. By using a tactile toolkit; chunky wooden needle, boingy woollen yarn and a comprehensive guide manual, a child participates in a sensory experience, becomes an active agent in creator of clothing, whilst exploring and expressing their inner selves.
Children will be the future thinkers, decision makers and citizens. By using earth’s resources, we, adults, make products for children to use and enjoy. How do these products impact the child when they are a grown up? As adults, we can choose for these products to have a positive, or a negative impact on future generations.
Inspired by theories of Maria Montessori and Friedrich Froebel, combined with circular economy thinking, The Convertibles offer future proof kidswear that holistically considers the end user; the child. From participatory learning activities through to sourcing raw materials and an end-of-life plan of the products, future generations and their world is looked after. Waste becomes no more, and the use natural resources is maximised.
The Convertibles range is designed to pass on life-long skills and ignite an understanding of clothes-making. Care and skill to repair clothing, and a sustainable mindset is passed on for future generations, equipping children with a flexible, able mindset and a wide range of life-long skills; creative thinking, material knowledge, three-dimensional thinking and problem solving and fine motoric skills. By participating in the creating of their material environment, children are able to connect and understand where ‘stuff’ comes from, who makes it and where it ends up. It’s important that kids are in the know!
The Convertibles adapt to growth spurts by adding more panels, accompanying the child along their adventures for various years, maximising the natural resources extracted to make these garments, minimising textile waste. At the end of its life as a garment, the Convertibles can be made into a soft toy or a cushion, to preserve those precious childhood memories that were collected through the years of playful wear.
With a tactile tool kit; a chunky hand made (blunt) wooden needle and chunky yarn, sewing becomes a sensory activity, providing mindful creative moments. There is so much in making by hands. Hand-stitch is like handwriting, expressing our personality. It may be a little wobbly to start with, let’s offer it a platform to grow! The stitching on the outside of the Convertibles celebrates the beauty of the handmade, the unique marks we make, and allows this fundamental building block of a garment to stand in the limelight that it deserves.