THE EDIT #1
Here we combine the storytelling with sustainability, we will fill this space with stories from around the world, celebrating the connection we have to these wonderful material things around us.
By Hana Al-Momani
short: delicious, cold-pressed juice. made in London from wonky, would-be-wasted fruits.
Ten years ago, Rejuce founder Thomas Keller was ‘cheffing’ in London. He was horrified by even the tip of the iceberg of food we send to landfill in this country. He couldn’t continue to watch this problem grow, and needed to be part of the solution.
So, whilst studying for his MA in Environmental Politics at King’s College London, Tom approached his local supermarket with a liability waiver, asking to take some surplus food off their hands. They willingly agreed and Tom began to save two kilos of food every week that would have otherwise been in the bin. With Tom’s determination, that weekly two kilos quickly grew to 200 kilos per day. His tiny student flat was full of fruit. Equipped with a handheld juicer, gaffer taped to his hand for efficiency, Tom was able to produce 20L of juice from the fruit per hour. Needing to make more, he upgraded to an automatic juicer - one of those mesmerising machines. This took Tom from 20 to 40L per hour, physically pushing his roommates and him to juice saturation point. With the support of Urban Routes, Tom was able to build a juicing kitchen in Hackney Wick, which enabled him to up the juicing levels and begin to be seen in a crowd of producers.
By 2013 Tom was collecting one tonne of otherwise-waste fruit every week to make juice with. In 2014 that doubled and so in 2015 he was able to buy a bigger juicer. That juicer could take two tonnes of fruit every hour and turn it into juice; but feeding even one tonne of fruit into the machine every hour would be hard work for the most muscular man. So their output was limited. To solve this problem and get closer to Tom’s goal of eliminating food waste, in 2016 Tom successfully crowdfunded over £10,000 to grow his business. With the money, he bought a conveyor-belt to feed ugly delicious fruit to the juicer. This tech enabled Tom to produce 120,000 bottles of juice per week, and really compete with the big boys and girls.
Rejuce’s mission is “to save perfectly edible fruit & veg from being thrown
away by turning it into delicious cold pressed juice”. Here are some of the
things they’re doing for sustainability:
-All made from seasonal food surpluses in the UK. No air-miles.
-100% fruit and veg with no reconstituted fruit pulp, preservatives or colourings,
flavouring, stabilisers, homogenisers or additives.
- Cold pressed to retain more vitamins and minerals for sustaining health!
- Naturally preserved with citrus.
- Affordable prices for social accessibility.
- Eco-friendly glass bottles, 100% recyclable.
- All profits reinvested to save more food from waste.
- Saved over 300 tonnes of fruit and veg from landfill, so far!
- Inspired and helped launch 40 food waste companies in the UK.
- Spread the good, sustainable word on Socials.
Like what you’ve read? Shop, follow or learn more about tackling food waste with
the resources below:
Unit 1a, 10 Stour Road, Vittoria wharf, Hackney wick, London E32NT
+44 (0) 7951 615201
Open Daily 9am-6pm
short: organic, Danish womenswear with a 100% transparent design process and a whole load o’ conscience.
By Signe is the story of a woman lead by her heart. The story began six months into Signe Rødbro’s degree when she made the brave decision to go against the expected. Signe left University to enrol in traditional tailoring school. After years around the world honing her skills and her creativity, Signe returned to her hometown.
Frederikshaven is a small harbour city in Northern Denmark; it is here, rather than in London, Milan, New York or Paris, that Signe chose as the birthplace of her label ‘By Signe’. In 2016 she ‘set up shop’ with her entire design and production under one big roof in this unsuspecting town. By being located outside of the world’s fashion capitals, Signe gave herself room to reflect on the industry’s standards, its bad habits and damaging practices. It was this physical and emotional space, perhaps, that allowed Signe to make independent decisions on how things should be done. She wanted to create clothing for women that didn’t just look and feel beautiful, but that had beauty behind it. Signe began to design, source and produce in a way that was healthy for the planet, the brand and her clients, all in-house.
Design first, By Signe is driven by comfort more than trends. The brand creates pieces you’ll want to keep wearing. The modern staples are clean, soft, cosy and enduring, but By Signe’s focus on transparency and materials is what really gives the brand its sustainable status. By Signe strive to use only organic materials (cotton and bamboo) certified by The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS); they know, care and talk a lot about the technicalities of that (links below for us materials nerds). Fabrics are left unbleached and only in natural colours - GOTS certification also ensures the non-use of heavy metal dyes, pesticides and toxic chemicals. Inevitable cut-offs are reworked into lingerie styles and even By Signe’s sewing thread is certified organic.
More than that, By Signe care deeply about their social impact. “We laugh a lot in the studio”, Signe says, “that spirit reflects in the beauty of the final product”. Her team in Denmark thrive in a positive working environment, made better by receiving above national living wage, plus health, injury and travel insurance. Further, By Signe’s inspirations and influences manifest as the dimensional, independent and healthy vision of woman By Signe designs for. Models cast are body positive and diverse, retouching is a no no and vintage objects and accessories for your wardrobe, home and mind receive dedicated space on their site.
For Signe, luxury is something truly beautiful and healthy, that which has been made not at the cost of human life or our planet. And so the tale continues.
By Signe create “honest and sustainable fashion without compromise”.
Here are some of the things they’re doing to combat fast fashion:
- Sourcing, design and manufacture all under one roof. Low carbon footprint.
- Timeless design with comfort and sustainability as priority.
- The Global Organic Textile Standard certified organic materials.
- Printed materials made from recycled and recyclable paper.
- Ethical security in a non-discriminating, healthy, safe and positive work environment.
- Contracted employees work reasonable hours and receive above the living wage.
- Commitment to diverse, natural beauty. Body positive casting with no retouching.
Like what you’ve read? Shop, follow or learn more about tackling fast fashion with
the resources below:
Shop: By Signe
via Rêve en Vert
short: conscious jewellery made in London and inspired by mother nature.
Brigitta Anderson grew up surrounded by creators. Her grandfather was a sculptor who taught philosophy, her grandmother a painter. Their son, her father, was a filmmaker who started his career creating shadow puppets and performances. Brigitta’s mother was a fashion designer, now therapist. Growing up, Brigitta says, “if you weren’t watching someone pattern cutting or creating stop frame animation, you were looking up at a puppet made from drift wood from a recent family holiday”. Creating and sharing stories was Brigitta’s world, and is in her blood.
Brigitta’s family weren’t trying to be sustainable, but there was a sense of responsibility in their crafts - a previous generation’s desire to not be wasteful, to be resourceful. From this, Brigitta inherited her strong moral foundation, to build with authenticity and integrity. So in 2017 when her chapter began in the family narrative, it was important to Brigitta to create something she was proud to stand behind.
The creative process is important to Brigitta Studio. Brigitta begins by searching for beautiful pockets of the world, to celebrate their stories through her collections. She immerses herself in those tales, studies and falls in love with the stories, before putting that emotion into her designs. She works with her hands for the tactility and the imperfect, unpredictable quality. This is something us humans could all be doing more of, to live a more conscious and grounded existence. “It’s really special to let that be an organic process”, she says. Once designs are finalised, pieces are produced in London to order, for minimal waste. Brigitta Studio materials are sourced from the UK to reduce carbon footprint and support local, independent businesses.
Brigitta Studio create conscious jewellery in the UK. Their aim is to produce from 100% recycled gold and silver. Here are some of the things they’re doing to support the conscious economy:
-Part of the slow fashion movement. Do not produce seasonally but honour the organic, creative process.
- 100% recycled packaging.
-Recycle excess silver and gold.
-Aim to produce jewellery 100% from recycled gold and silver.
-Minimal stock, finished to order.
-Designed and produced in London with independent businesses.
-Materials sourced from London, Yorkshire and Shropshire to reduce carbon footprint.
Like what you’ve read? Shop, follow or learn more about slow fashion with the resources below:
Shop: Brigitta Studio
short: the most popular thrift store in London.