Upcycling scraps – Environmental politics

Alexandra Spring

I investigated the use of scraps and ‘wasteful’, old garments and how they can interconnect to the reuse methods of recycling and regenerating. Reflecting on past activities of the tunic creation, I am very interested in what I could create with extended planning, research and time! This idea was strongly inspired by a designer I researched for AOS1, Jonathan Cohen, who develops a separate line in his brand dedicated to minimising waste, by recycling his scraps to then regenerate spectacular garments. I wanted to explore this through the methods of stocktaking, sorting, unpicking/cutting and patchwork compositions that we looked into during classes.

Using patchwork compositions and garment design, i aimed to vocalise an idea/theme that can act as an approach to  activism, to promote change for example. This interest sparked from the article we analysed, The Poetics Of Waste. I want to look into how waste can link to life as metaphors, aligning ideas of inspiration, reflection and enchantment. I want waste to be able to have the potential to have meaningful engagement with the world! “If it is hidden or disguised, it is denied the opportunity to communicate and any engagement will be forgone.” (Carla Binotto & Alice Payne (2017) The Poetics of Waste: Contemporary Fashion Practice in the Context of Wastefulness, Fashion Practice, 9:1, 5-29, DOI: 10.1080/17569370.2016.1226604.)

Moreover, I was able to present two ideas within a garment that represented the natural environment vs the political landscape. This was achieved by using half a suit jacket (stereotypical to politics) and manipulating scrap pieces to create a textile expression of the natural world. This ultimately proposes a call for action to political leaders, aswell as the fashion industry, using the effective creation of reuse/recycle fashion.

Prototype image 1
Prototype image 2
360 video
Inspiration – The Poetics of Waste / Zero waste Daniel
Design Development – toiling
Detailed image