Textile Waste

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Singapore generates 1 tonne of textile waste every 5 minutes

For a population of only 5.6 million, it’s alarmingly more than Japan (127 million) and United Kingdom (65.6 million)

 

94% incinerated 6% gets recycled by exporting to foreign markets

 

Charities are receiving more than they can give away and without a local textile recycling plant, 400 tonnes of secondhand clothing is exported every month, making up the 6% of recycled textile waste

These secondhand clothing is being sold to countries like Malaysia, Indonesia and Phillipines where those clothes we donated are resold at places like the Monja Market in Medan

 

If our donated clothes don’t go directly to charity, they’re given a chance of second life at an affordable price for the underprivileged. So what’s the big deal? Here’s the thing: more countries are enforcing a ban of secondhand clothing imports so at the rate we’re buying and getting rid of clothes, textile waste will continue to pile.

There isn’t enough textile recycling plants in the world to repurpose from the waste stream and it’s an unheard practice in Singapore. Until there’s a bigger market for recycled fiber, we cannot rely on the recycling industry to fix this global problem. We have to view this planetary issue from a social perspective and that means changing our behaviours.

 
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When we design and produce our work, we systematically avoid wastage. Calculating fabric consumption for every piece and sometimes choosing 60inch wide linen over 45inch so that we can maximise the fabric. When we draw the base linen over the cutting table, it becomes the backdrop of our self-made mathematical puzzle game.

It’s tricky but it’s part of the creative process. There will be times when we have to create samples for clients or the fabric has subtle shifts in printing due to inaccurate ink consistency and that’s when we have fabric scraps but they’re not much. Not enough to create an entire new collection of products or to be resold in yardage. Just bits that we’d collect over time and finally put them into bundles or host printing parties, so more people see these pieces as an opportunity to create instead of discardable scraps. 

We generate lesser fabric scraps with every project and it’s our goal to achieve zero waste like our basics line but we still hope to continuously encourage the responsible use of fabric with this little thing we call…

#FFScrapThat

Scraping the idea of waste and inspiring better use of fabrics here.

 
 

Get involved

We repurpose our fabric scraps so you can use them. How many grocery bags do a pair of sisters need, anyway? Write your name and email below to be informed when we initiate a giveaway.

 
Aisah Dalduri