Upcycling: how it works
Upcycling works by turning things we already have into new exciting products. By giving old products a new use, it ticks three environmental boxes at once; recycling, reuse and reduction in waste. And when some people do it – it can look incredible too.
What gets upcycled
Durable products are often those that end up in landfill, dumped or in our oceans. It’s their durability which often makes them hard to recycle, and hard for our environment to break down. Things like tyres, rubber and certain forms of plastic are the main villains. But also things like wood, furniture, glass and other plastic still get dumped when in fact they are perfect for upcycling. Upcycling helps the environment by taking these products out of the refuse cycle, and into a new product cycle.
Whatever the material that’s used, the most important thing is ingenuity and imagination, as even the most tired product can be reinvented into something with real use and renewed value.
Laura Zabo has founded an upcycling boutique ZABO, aimed at turning tyres into fashion. And it’s a daunting task. Some 3 billion tyres are discarded globally each year – but thousands of lucky unwanted, used or discarded tyres make their way into her fashion-house to get reimagined into stunning designer pieces. Some are belts, others jewellery, sandals, clothes or accessories. She wants to empower people to make the next world better whilst looking good along the way. We think she’s doing a pretty good job. So, you metropolitan warriors out there who want to stand out and care for the environment, take a look at ZABO - a PETA-approved vegan brand.
Upcycling is on the up
Designers and upcyclers like Laura are seeing more and more people seeking their products. ZABO is now available in the UK, the USA and the Netherlands as well as shipping worldwide. Below you can see a selection of our favourite pics, and also some other great upcycling companies we love. If you have any suggestions, please use the comments section below.
Image credits - Laura Zabo necklacePhoto & Retouch: @lauraviktualiaphoto | Model: @tuyet_my_modelpage | Makeup: @rosielindfield91 from @stylesisters_uk | Wardrobe styling: @miina_laitsaari | Outfit designer: @harriet_kjellman | Necklace designer: @laura_zabo