“I dislike the word waste,” says Simone Post. “We should regard every material, and that includes waste, as a new source of material.” The Dutch expert demonstrated what she meant with her graduation project at the Design Academy Eindhoven: She developed an upcycling concept for offcuts of material that she then fashions into circular rugs. The leftovers and rejects come from the production lines at textile manufacturer Vlisco, a company known for its highly colorful and extravagantly patterned fabrics made using a complex wax technique. “The big difference between upcycling and recycling is that with upcycling as part of the circular economy the material is imbued with greater value,” says the designer. By contrast, recycling might mean that a fabric involving a complex manufacturing process is later only used to make insulating boards.
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