99Recycle turns mountains of waste into sustainable fashion accessories
The future is increasingly planned in a sustainable way and combined with a circular economy in all sectors. The fashion industry and clothing brands are no different.
In the 21st century, the sustainability of fashion has become very important, as this industry is one of the most important and problematic environmental pollutants in terms of the amount and variety of waste generated. With an increasingly recognized weight in the pollution of the planet, new production methods and more environmentally friendly collections are beginning to emerge across the world.
A Russian fashion brand from St. Petersburg called 99Recycle is trying to get rid of this garbage in the city by turning it into fashion accessories. Rummaging through trash cans, 99Recycle employees collect all kinds of recyclable materials to create backpacks, bags, laptop cases and even skateboards, bikes.
99Recycle uses a huge 3D printer designed by Hyundai in which shredded recycled plastic is used as the raw material. Thus, the printing cost is much lower than that of conventional filament 3D printers. The 3D printer produces hand-sewn shapes and textiles, which means that every detail of the brand’s accessories is unique. To date, the company has collected over 70 tonnes of recycled plastic by working with local non-profit organizations that specialize in collecting certain types of materials.
“The process of preparing materials is more complicated than for ordinary materials. Most of our time is taken up by preparation, as we have to clean it, flatten it, select it, reject some materialExplains Olesya Kulik, designer at 99Recycle, explaining the tedious process of finding the material and turning it into a portable or usable item.
All of the brand’s products come from landfills. Bags, accessories and even skateboards, everything is created in a creative way, with a unique design, in order to reuse the material.
The brand name itself reflects the idea of creating products in which 99% of the materials are recycled and the products themselves are 99% recyclable.
In addition to having a store where they sell their products, the 99Recycle project also holds interesting master classes and gives informative lectures on recycling, in which they talk about various methods of waste disposal, in the hope of saving their townspeople have a bad habit of throwing garbage anywhere. In 2020, 99Recycle became the Project of the Year at the 2020 St. Petersburg Awards.