If you can’t live a 100% zero-waste lifestyle (kudos to the rare angels who do), why not embrace your inner Trash Queen?
That’s where these eco-conscious designers come in: they’re spinning garbage into gold, making shoes, leggings, and more out of everything from coffee grounds to bottle tops.
Our top 5 “waste not, want not” must-haves:
- The Pantai Travel Shoes from Bali-based Indosole are 100% handcrafted, with custom-dyed canvas uppers and repurposed soles made from tires. Every year, 1.5 billion tires end up in landfills — where they take thousands of years to decompose — or are burned as cheap-but-toxic fuel. Indosole’s goal is to combat pollution and waste by reusing 1 million tires, sourcing them directly from garages and tire brokers in Indonesia.
- This week’s solstice officially marked the beginning of summer, so the right pair of shades is a must. Karün, a Swedish company, uses local surplus waste to create their eyewear collections, like these Antarctic Sunglasses made from 100% recycled fishing nets, discarded and collected along the Chilean coast. Other pieces are made from old or windfallen wood and even vintage jeans!
- RAREFORM breathes new life into old billboards by repurposing the vinyl, which otherwise would have been sent to landfills. They use the durable, lightweight material to create a line of chic bags with a Pop Art aesthetic, like their Weekender Duffle bags. The founders were inspired while traveling in South America, where they saw people using old billboards as roofing; now, they repurpose around 20,000 pounds of them a month!
- Let’s be real: you could always use another pair of stretchy pants. Girlfriend Collective’s rainbow of leggings and sports bras are all made from a unique fabric created out of post-consumer, BPA-free water bottles. They source the bottles from Taiwan, once known as Garbage Island and now a world leader in recycling; after washing, they’re reprocessed into super-fine threads for knitting. We’ve got our eyes on their High-Rise Leggings; designed for all body types.
- Bottletop started with a single handbag in 2002 and is now a full-on fashion company, turning out impressively innovative and creative pieces. Their signature style — like the Luciana Enamel — is made with hand-crocheted upcycled metal soda tabs, hand-painted with enamel and finished with certified Amazon Zero Deforestation leather. Their flagship store launched in London just last year, featuring an interior made entirely out of 100% recycled plastic.