When Plastic Waste Merges With Technology To Make a Fashion Statement

We explore the brands using plastic waste to make a fashion statement

Plastic pollution is at the moment affecting land and waterways. Plastic is also affecting the ocean life and a lot of marine animals are now suffering due to direct ingestion of plastic waste, or through exposure to chemicals within plastics. The good news is that Plastic waste is quickly becoming the go-to material for innovative brands.

We have written quite a few articles on how plastic waste is being re-engineered into something that we can use in our everyday life. A great example is Bionic Yarn‘s collaboration with G Star Raw which launched RAW for the Oceans, a denim line that is woven with about nine tons of the plastic.

This H&M Gown Is Made From Plastic Waste

So as plastic waste becomes the new black for brands, here are a few products that had us asking, “Is that really made from waste?

Plastic Whale [FURNITURE]

With 8 billion kilos of plastic waste predicted to enter the world’s rivers, lakes and oceans in 2018, ‘plastic soup’ is a growing global problem. Hoping to provide a solution, Plastic Whale and Vepa have joined forces to produce Plastic Whale Circular Furniture. Launched on the 22nd of February 2018, the high-end office furniture is made from Amsterdam Canal Plastic.

Plastic Whale team

Collecting plastic on from the canals in Amsterdam, the two companies are solving the plastic problem in a fun way. They involve the general public and companies too. Once collected Plastic Whale and Vepa’s collection consist of a boardroom table, a chair, lamps and acoustic wall panels. Part of the proceeds is invested in local initiatives across the world that tackle the plastic soup problem.

Rothy [SHOES]

Making use of our waste, Rothy has come up with a brilliant way of making waste-free shoes using ground-up bottles. The amazing part is that the San Francisco-based startup shoe knitting process only takes six minutes.

When Plastic Bottles Are Being Re-engineered Into Waste-free Shoes

Designed with only three materials, the upper part of the shoe is made entirely from recycled water bottle filament, as is the insole, which is attached to a recyclable foam.   The sole is made from rubber. What is great is that the material feels like fabric, not like a plastic bottle and the shoe also fits snugly on the foot without rivets and shoelaces, or buckles, or any extra parts.

adidas [TRAINERS]

With such attention to a worthy cause should it come as a surprise that adidas have made the sustainable decision to also use the plastic waste from the ocean to create some stylish footwear.

About 16.5 old bottles and 13 grams of plastic from gill nets go into a single upper on one of Adidas’s new shoe.
About 16.5 old bottles and 13 grams of plastic from gill nets go into a single upper on one of Adidas’s new shoe | Photo Credit: Adidas

Working with Parley for the Oceans, a company founded by Cyrill Gutsch, Adidas got quite familiar with the plastic waste that Parley retrieves from the coast of Africa to make into the thread, which allowed them to design and create sea form green trainers that are quite easy on the eye. Using PET, plastic commonly used for water bottles, the new design is entirely made out of recycled plastic and brags white with teal thread stitches all fused together with bio-waste-powered steam.

ALSO READ: Which Is The Lesser of Two Evils, Dumping Plastic or Reusing It In Fabric?

Hamilton Perkins [BAGS]

Accessory founder Hamilton Perkins collection of premium eco-friendly bags are made out of 100% recycled plastic bottles.The environmentally friendly bags are targeted to the socially conscious traveller on the go. Designed to be innovative, Perkin’s main goal was to re-engineer classic travel accessories by building his ideas from the ground up so as to give them transparency and impact.


So what makes Hamilton Perkins bags stand out from the rest? Well, their collection of Earth transparent bags are not only made out of 100% recycled plastic bottles, they are also lined with re-purposed billboard vinyl, which means that each bag’s lining is different and unique. FashNerd.com loves that Hamilton Perkins Collection bags reduce waste levels, cut carbon emissions in the environment, and conserve water. What’s not to like?


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Founding Editor in Chief at | editor@fashnerd.com | Website

Founding editor-in-chief & WearableTechStylist of FashNerd.com, Muchaneta has worked in the fashion industry for over 14 years. She is currently one of the leading influencers speaking and writing about the merger of fashion with technology and wearable technology and a regular contributor to digital news sites like Wareable.