Aimee Wood: DIY as alchemy of our contradictions

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Aimee Wood, who writes on Clones N Clowns has just released her second book in French “Bandeaux, headbands et bijoux de cheveux” .

Aimee knows how to give amazing advice to customize our clothes, while spreading her own style: poetry, freshness, Londoner.

Do It Yourself seems to explode thanks to online communities and new kits. How do you explain the rising importance of DIY?

I think there is a lot involved in the do it yourself trend, we could talk about the recession, the Internet, the ways of our society… We could analyse the trend to death ! But for a lot of people it has been a lifestyle for a very long time. I remember customising clothes and sewing bits and bobs as a child… For a few years now, we have definitely been seeing more and more of “homemade” and it is now called “DIY” which used to be building sheds as far as I was concerned ?! I think it’s a lot to do with old techniques being used in new ways. New materials, new colours, new styles. The Internet is a great way for people to share their ideas and projects and also for people to buy what they need to get making at home. I think the visual power of the Internet is also a massive part of the attraction.

Young British designers or Central St Martins graduates seem very keen to play with DIY. Do you think that DIY is a sort of political movement? :)

I don’t think DIY is political in every case but I think it is often very philosophical. For some people, making things at home is a way to express nostalgia and a certain disagreement with they ways we consume today. Others might see DIYing as a way to recycle, showing themselves and others that we can be happy with what we’ve got. However for a lot of people, I believe do it yourself is simply a great way to get a fashionable accessory at a cheaper price or with a personal twist. Everyone creates for their own reasons. DIY can definitely serve political movements however doing something yourself instead of buying it ready-made is not necessarily a political statement.

Which advice would you give to start customizing clothes?

I’d say start by getting inspired. Pinterest is great for this but you can also go old-school and just carry a notebook and pen at all times. I’m constantly jotting things down, scribbling ideas, taking quick pics and doodling. When you’re inspired, you’re ready to give it a go. Then I would suggest you start small. Some techniques take a lot of practice so you’ll want to begin with something rewarding to keep you inspired. My final tip is to never say “can’t”. I have met so many people who think they “can’t” DIY. That doesn’t even mean anything. We all do things ourselves all the time ! Don’t be intimidated by the ambitious projects we see online, there are ideas out there for everyone. Remember, the hardest part is getting started !

Have you ever wondered that you could launch your own fashion collection?

Yes… Over and over ! I’d love to launch a brand or collection and as you can imagine I have pages of ideas

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