How Old Denim is Recycled into Furniture!

29 Apr 2019

In order to decrease wastage and make Planet Earth better for the future generation, it is important to take effective steps. By recycling and reusing we can successfully reduce wastage. The Bahia Denim Project started by Sophie Rowley successfully accomplishes this, by lowering down the wastage of denim fabrics. The project prevents old denim from ending up in the landfills and includes actual furniture like this table made of old denim jeans.

The name comes from Brazilian blue marble, and at a glance, it really does look something like marble–or perhaps acid-washed concrete. In fact, it is the result of dipping worn jeans into bioresin (a plastic made from organic compounds instead of petroleum), and laying them over various molds. The denim is layered and crisscrossed, much like papier-mâché. Finally, the material turns into a composite material similar to fiberglass in which the textile serves as a reinforcement of the resin.

Also, after it all dries and hardens, the material completely transforms. It feels like fabric and not plastic. Furthermore, the exposed surface is jeans, so it has a soft and warm sensation. While Americans go through 68 pounds of clothing per person per year, only 16% of America’s clothing is recycled, while the rest ends up in landfills or is incinerated.

More importantly, denim compared to other fabrics has a terrible environmental footprint, largely due to a combination of short-wear fast fashion and the chemical processes that dye and distress jeans to perfection. Rowley is able to recycle about 10 to15 pairs of jeans per square meter, which she receives from the recycling centres in Germany.

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