Wednesday, 13 July 2011

To recycle or upcycle?

Whilst mooching through the stands at Bubble, the trade fair for baby and children’s products in London last month, Sarah and I stumbled across a gorgeous potential new supplier. The makers used the method of upcycling to create new and fresh unique pieces for children. Each piece was a one off and a totally simple design. It sent me thinking about upcycling and what it really was. Surely re-cycling and upcycling is the same thing? So today while chasing the Ida who has just discovered walking or should I say running, because apparently that’s easier….(?In her head anyway?) I decided to look into upcycling being the hippy mummy I try to be.

Upcycling is becoming increasingly more popular amoung those concerned with climate change. Recycling is a good way of transforming new from old. However, it requires energy and resources to collect, sort and process all our unwanted waste and transform it into new products.
Upcycling is even greener as people have a purpose for the unwanted items before they are thrown away. Normally the only energy used to make the new item is your own steam!
I first heard about this while at Art school many moons ago when a girl approached a farmer to take all the inner’s of tyres from the tops of the drying straw when they were no longer needed and transformed them into handbags. An excellent idea I thought. She was even paid by the farmer to take the tyres away. Alas I am not really a handbag kind of girl, and nor do I want to add tyre handbags to the u-ni-k website. So stumbling across this new maker brought a very BIG smile to our faces!! A upcycled children’s product. Fantastic!!

We’ll be launching the new makers collection to the u-ni-k website very soon. Be patient…they are worth waiting for we promise! I already want a Anna size version of one of there pieces they are soooo gorgeous!

So, you learn something new everyday! Run before you walk and Upcycle!! Not only is u-ni-k helping the environment by buying organic, recycled cottons  and safety and environmentally friendly dyes, it also buys from up-cyclers!!
As I write this Ida has discovered her own method of up-cycling. Despite her box full of toys, she uses a Pampers box to push Mr. Elephant round the place. Who needs toys when you have cardboard boxes!

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