Upcycling cars to backpacks

| Recycle Outdoor Gear | 2nd April, 2012

One of the major aims of ROGBlog is to seek out and tell the stories of reuse and recycling of all outdoor gear.

There is also another topic that is getting a lot of interest in recent months ‘Upcycling‘ – Converting waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality or a higher environmental value.

This is such a story…

Mariclaro upcycles exploded air bags, car upholstery, bike tubes, truck tarps into carryalls, backpacks and bags. Based in Toronto they are perfecting upcycling from bags made of car upholstery to jackets made from exploded airbags, and earrings from 8mm film.

They produce some fantastic bags and backpacks from redundant automotive scrap.

A quote lifted from Mariclaro website states…
“There’s so much old stuff, why would you buy anything new”

Mariclaro designs are all one of a kind pieces handmade in Toronto all from recycled materials.
The combination of the unique skills and creative energy of co-founders Sven Schlegel and Willa Murray are the power house behind this great idea. They work out of a thriving workshop.

Sven’s natural eye for design and his drive for perfection compliment his background in Planning and Economics. A combination of excellent sewing skills and a willingness to experiment with materials make Willa an ideal co-founder. In 2008, Patricia Youn joined the team, adding her skills from her training in Fashion Design and Production. In 2011 Linsday Sinclair joined the team.

Sounds like a great team.

In addition to making a great range of bags they also offer a fascinating bespoke service. The Mariclaro Limited Edition is a mark of excellence that signifies the bag was made from limited materials from a specific car. They provide a photo of the car the main materials came from. It applies to all their models.

With all this creative energy it’s of no surprise to learn Mariclaro received the 2011 National Globe Award, the Honorary Small Business Award for the Best Green Consumer Product.

A great example of what can be done to take a waste stream and turn it into premium, attractive must have products




Clothing with intent

| Recycle Outdoor Gear | 3rd January, 2012

Standing in the rain at Glastonbury Festival 2009, Kate Benton had a revelation.

WiTHiNTENT uses fabric from the tonnes of broken and damaged tents that are left behind at the end of music festivals, to create shower-proof clothing and accessories for the festival market. Each item is designed and made in the UK. This is the story of how it all started…

Whilst leafing through her slightly soggy copy of The Glastonbury Paper, Kate was astounded to read that thousands of tents are left behind at this festival alone every year – with the majority ending up in landfill. Inspired by Glastonbury’s environmental responsibility, Kate decided that something had to be done to help break the disposable nature of our society. And so the idea for WiTHiNTENT was born. Tents that are left behind by naughty boys and girls are up-cycled to make beautiful, functional, ethically made shower proof clothing and accessories. Ever-mindful

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