Waste not, want not: upcycled clothing and accessories for your post-lockdown wardrobe

Marie Kondo or not, we Indians could be huge hoarders. As we emerge from lockdown, some vogue upcyclers to encourage and probably assist repurpose what we have already got

Indians love recycling and repurposing, from plastic dabbas to grandmum’s cutlery. I keep in mind my mum’s 1960s purple plaid skirt and white prime. One of the final outfits her dad and mom purchased her earlier than they moved again to Kerala from London, it was handed right down to an eight-year-old me and later utilized by each my cousins. I nonetheless have it — albeit with a couple of darns — prepared for my niece.

But within the final decade or so, our love of quick vogue and chasing tendencies has meant that comparable recollections have lain forgotten in cabinets and field rooms. The lockdown, nonetheless, has modified all the things, and social media conversations concerning the failing economic system have shaken issues up. Suddenly we’re pondering twice about changing one thing that’s broken, and are googling darners and tailors (the nice ones have disappeared). This is the place designers and manufacturers like Doodlage and LataSita are stepping in.

Thrift your purchase

  • Bodements: Divya Saini, who launched the classic clothing label a few years in the past, shares upcycled clothing hand-picked from around the globe.
  • In-house upcycling tasks embody turning actor Swara Bhaskar’s grandmother’s sari right into a pant swimsuit. From ₹2,000, on bodements.com
  • Twice Treasured: Begun by three pals a month in the past, this Chennai-based startup sells pre-loved child merchandise.
  • With a deal with sustainability, discover all the things from cribs to automotive seats right here. From ₹500 onwards, @shoptwicetreasured
  • The Local Vintage: Stylist Sujala Newar’s classic clothing retailer on Instagram showcases items hand-picked by her.
  • Think velvet coats from the 70s and high-waisted shorts from the 80s. @shopthelocalvintage
  • Refash: This platform boasts upcycled vogue and accessories comprised of post-industrial, pre-consumer and post-consumer waste. refash.in

These skilled upcyclers are serving to us realise our want to save lots of, to stretch what we personal, and but be ‘with it’. “Our resources are few and the pandemic has really highlighted that,” says Meghna Nayak, of LataSita. “[Coming out of lockdown] I really want people to think twice, thrice about where they want to put their money.” This listing will get you began if you happen to want to ‘wear your nostalgia’ and go zero waste.


Meghna Nayak, LataSita  

Meghna Nayak

LataSita | Dresses comprised of puja pandals

For an individual in vogue, Kolkata-based Nayak hates vogue. The business’s “negative environmental impact and sweatshop culture” to be exact. So eight years in the past, as a substitute of writing about it, the previous journalist determined to do one thing about it, along with her closed loop model. “I didn’t have much money to make samples out of… and then my mum opened up her wardrobe,” she recollects. Today, she creates her wealthy tapestry of designs from saris and materials tucked away in wardrobes throughout the nation. “Since I’m actually working with waste, I get my supplies from bizarre and fantastic locations. One of my most enjoyable tasks is an ongoing assortment that I’m making out of 900 saris that after made up a Durga Puja pandal,” she says.

While her bespoke items are comprised of cloth despatched by means of her ‘Send Us Your Saree’ marketing campaign, her prêt line makes use of an enormous number of supplies, together with denims, tablecloths and curtains. One of her fondest recollections: an attractive silk sari with stains operating down it. “The woman’s mother, who loved desserts, had Parkinson’s disease and the stains were caused by her shaky hands as she ate the sweets that she loved. The piece I created for her had them incorporated in a hidden underskirt so she could connect with her mother every time she looked at that,” says Nayak, 34. Though lockdown has paused manufacturing — Cyclone Amphan added to her woes as her tailors misplaced their properties (she is at present serving to them rebuild) — her March assortment has been flying off her digital cabinets. Up subsequent is a collaboration with Indian-American singer Zoya and a brand new web site. Priced between ₹3,000 and ₹25,000. Details: latasita.in

Aiswarya Kutty and Madhulika Umapathy, Pomogrenade

Aiswarya Kutty and Madhulika Umapathy, Pomogrenade  

Aiswarya Kutty and Madhulika Umapathy

Pomogrenade | Reversible jacket gown

In 2016, the 2 pals started the Bengaluru-based model with a (nonetheless fashionable) line of 50 kimonos. Using locally-produced cloth and textile waste, their practical clothing underlines their message of moral vogue. And lockdown has been a good time to push this concept. “We’ve seen an increase in inquiries of late and a lot of engagement on social media,” says Kutty, 30, including, “People are a lot more conscious. What should have organically taken three years has now happened in a few months because of Covid-19.”

While their adaptable designs — resembling a reversible gown with a ‘U’ and ‘V’ neck than may also flip right into a jacket — are their signature, they imagine their USP is their pricing. “We are one of the most affordable slow fashion brands out there. We want to help the majority of the country make the transition from fast fashion,” says Umapathy, 34. Their new ‘Zoomtastic’ line of shorts are successful, and the duo is now increasing their upcycled line. “We’ve tied up with several handloom houses to use their dead stock,” says Kutty, including {that a} new assortment of attire (anticipated to launch in a few weeks) are being comprised of surplus handwoven cotton cloth. Also count on a menswear line of free-size shirts and a spread of accessories, together with scarves, belts and baggage. Priced between 599 and 3,500, on pomogrenade.com

Patch Over Patch

Patch Over Patch  

Kavisha Parikh

Patch Over Patch | Panelled kaftan attire

“Upcycling is a big playground. You get all kinds of textures, colours and fabrics to play with,” says Parikh, 26, an adjunct design graduate from NIFT Himachal, who launched her Surat-based model 18 months in the past. With a playful mixture of shift attire, kimono jackets and cotton blazers, her bywords are sustainable and minimal carbon footprint. “As a designer who explores texture and form, my designs work with both linear and curve geometry,” she says.

Surface exploration is a ardour — some of the difficult was a design the place she layered and quilted 25 completely different items of cloth. Working solely with submit manufacturing waste, which she sources from wholesale markets and native outlets in Surat and Ahmedabad, she additionally upcycles waste from her personal manufacturing line. While lockdown affected gross sales on the Paperboat Collective (Goa) and Go Native (Bengaluru), the place she retails, orders on Instagram have elevated. “Currently we are collaborating with Athlos [the athletic wear brand] to use their bamboo jersey fabric dead stock,” she says. Also count on a line of tops and kaftan attire with their in-house panelling approach. 1,500 to 6,000, @patchoverpatch_upcycle

Lovebirds x Smoke Lab, Varun and Sanya Jain

Lovebirds x Smoke Lab, Varun and Sanya Jain

Lovebirds x Smoke Lab

Smoke Wear | Suede rompers

This clothing line — an extension of Delhi-based umbrella entity, Smoke Lab — embraces variety or, as artistic director Sanya V Jain places it, it’s “hypermodern and gender-neutral, embodying freedom, functionality and living responsibly”. The collab with Delhi up to date put on label Lovebirds, by Amrita Khanna and Gursi Singh, was inevitable. “We are in a world that has limited resources and this is a reality we wanted to negotiate, experiment and be creative with. We’ve used only upcycled materials [including handwoven denim and handloom fabric] that was available in the studio, and reimagined as luxe and timeless pieces,” says Jain, including that demand has elevated throughout lockdown, with prospects opting for “non-cluttered, easy-to-wear basics”. Expect all the things from dungarees and suede rompers to blouson coats. 10,000 onwards, on smokewear.in.

Kriti Tula - Doodlage

Kriti Tula – Doodlage

Kriti Tula

Doodlage | Home decor

“Garments are not as disposable as we’ve been made to believe. A well-made piece can easily last 20-30 years and has the potential to be worn more than 100 wears,” says Tula, the designer behind the zero-waste vogue model. With the typical lifetime of a garment now being estimated to be 5 to seven wears, this tradition is extraordinarily dangerous for the setting and the individuals working to make our garments. During lockdown, Tula has taken the time to organise the model, plan forward and strive new issues.

Besides new prospects, she has additionally received an opportunity to attach with different inexperienced initiatives to assist them make smaller adjustments, like investing in upcycled or recycled uniforms and plastic free packaging. “We’re also collaborating and co-creating short collections with like-minded people. We will be launching five new collaborated collections by October,” she says. The first one, Indigo Chronicles by Doodlage x Iro Iro, is already dwell on the web site. “We are upcycling tonnes of scrap by weaving it back to create soft furnishing products through this collection.” Another initiative the label undertook was the launch of a present card to assist their artisans. “This allowed us to sail through this time with 100% proceeds dedicated to ensure zero pay cuts for our artisans and business as usual for our vendors,” she says. Priced between 600 and 5,200, on doodlage.in.

pero denim jackets

pero denim jackets  

Aneeth Arora

Pero | Layered and embroidered jackets

Pero’s upcycling initiative started with one among Arora’s much-worn denim jackets. Now at the least 20 years outdated, it has been repaired and embellished with tassels and badges from her travels. “Later, when we started adding details and layers to our designs [to avoid plagiarization], we realised they were becoming heirloom pieces. It is the need of the hour now — everyone is talking about buying less and valuing what you have in your wardrobe, finding various ways of wearing it, and passing it on,” she says. With 2020 marking 10 years of pero, they’ve launched a 50-jacket capsule with Ogaan. Over the lockdown, they’ve been engaged on these orders. “We have a huge inventory of textiles since we make our own fabrics and thought it was a good time to relaunch those with special pieces in a limited-edition collection,” says Arora. They do invite individuals to put in writing in with upcycling requests, however they solely tackle the job if it matches one standards: “The story should appeal to us.” From 25,000 onwards, on pero.co.in.

Adhiraj Singh and Shradha Kochhar, Lota

Adhiraj Singh and Shradha Kochhar, Lota

Adhiraj Singh and Shradha Kochhar

Lota | Knitwear from T-shirts

The duo is understood for working with pre- and post-consumer waste, sourced from factories in Delhi/NCR. Currently engaged on a capsule line of zero-waste knitwear (to be launched subsequent month), the road (₹6,500-₹8,000) includes handknit sweaters and vests. “The yarn is created by shredding and re-spinning discarded clothing such as T-shirts, tops and shirts. Pieces are knit to shape without generating any textile waste in the process,” says Kochhar, including that the gathering takes inspiration from the vivid South Asian road fashion of the ’60s. “We’ve always had a history of consuming very differently from the West. There is a culture of repurposing, re-wear and repair in every household, and more people are taking up these practices now during lockdown. So the future is very hopeful,” she says. Details: shoplota.com



Sathya Bhavana

Revastra | Kaftan attire with origami

Started by the previous journalist as a ‘Slow & Spiritual Fashion Research Lab’, the platform encourages individuals to empty out their wardrobes and re-purpose their outdated saris. “Usually, when people cut up saris to make new clothing, they do it ruthlessly. So I began studying the fabric more, understanding its history and stories [such as why a particular border is used], and exploring its sacred geometry, before making my designs,” says Bhavana, who initially started upcycling her mum’s saris for herself — as kaftans and skirts. Today, she collaborates with Kamalini, a Delhi-based NGO that gives vocational coaching to underprivileged ladies, to make her clothes. “I take very few orders [she takes up to a month to work on one]. And I try to be innovative, like making origami out of the sari’s fall fabric, thus highlighting what was once hidden,” she says, sharing that one of many makeovers she did was with an heirloom Phulkari sari that her purchasers grandmother had made herself, which Bhavana crafted right into a jacket. In talks now to scale the model, she additionally conducts workshops on upcycling, and is engaged on DIY books on methods to re-purpose saris. ₹8,000 onwards (₹1,000 per hour for consultations), on revastra.com.


Rini Mehta Saxena and Rohan Mehta, Pitara

Rini Mehta Saxena and Rohan Mehta, Pitara  

Rini Mehta Saxena and Rohan Mehta

Pitara | Kalamkari baggage

After a line of bespoke baggage comprised of jute, leather-based and cloth have been successful, in mid-2018 the Jaipur model kickstarted their assortment of upcycled merchandise. Old garments, saris and bedsheets went into creating 25 sling and hand baggage that offered out in every week’s time. “Seeing how people were keen to use such products, we decided to craft an entire line of bags, table and door mats, beanbags and coasters,” says Mehta, who sources block printed, kalamkari, ikat and different handwoven materials from native markets. “The trend [to upcycle] is picking up due to the drastic change in environmental conditions,” he provides, sharing that they’re engaged on creating gildings (panels, tassels) in crochet and embroidery. The duo can be encouraging individuals to ship in materials for upcycling. From ₹300 onwards, on pitaraunboxcreativity.com.

Riti Jain Dhar and Maanya Dhar of Imarim

Riti Jain Dhar and Maanya Dhar of Imarim  

Riti Jain Dhar and Maanya Dhar

Imarim | Winter flower kettles

Kabari and banjara markets (and pals and household) are the first sources of waste materials for this Gurugram-based upcycled decor model. “Indians are good with ‘jugaad’. We turn people’s waste into works of art; it is a win-win situation,” says Riti. While they’re recognized for their hand-painted, upcycled merchandise resembling cushion covers and tables, the model’s commissioned items caught our eye. “We have transformed chairs, cabinets and even front doors with our vibrant artwork,” she says, including that their kettle sequence was successful. “It featured a variety of winter flowers. Each piece is one-of-a-kind.” From ₹7,000 onwards, on imarim.in.

Ishrat Sahgal, Mishcat

Ishrat Sahgal, Mishcat  

Ishrat Sahgal

Mishcat | Carpet mimicking woodpecker markings

When this Rhode Island School of Design graduate moved again to Delhi to begin her personal inside design and structure observe, she needed a parallel ardour undertaking. “Carpets just made sense,” says Sahgal, who felt the ground overlaying business hadn’t had a lot innovation in years. “I thought it could use a shake up.” Her selection of silk sari waste was one such shock. “In the sari weaving industry, a lot of silk is wasted. A sari is usually five to six metres, and there is always a meter or a half left over, which we buy,” she says.

Sourcing from throughout South India, the silk is handknotted into vivid carpets by artisans in Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, completed in Agra, and retailed of their studios in Delhi and London. While manufacturing has been tough to handle throughout lockdown — “I’ve been joking that while people have baby cams, I have weaver cams [on WhatsApp]” — June and July have been nice for gross sales. Currently engaged on a collab with a Swedish designer, look out for new patterns each different month. A favorite: the Forest carpet, which replicates the patterns a woodpecker makes on a tree trunk. From ₹38,000 onwards, on mishcatco.com

Swapna Mehta, Jhumka necklace

Swapna Mehta, Jhumka necklace  

Swapna Mehta

Jhumka necklace

A serendipitous assembly at a bazaar — with a girl promoting her outdated jewelry to purchase newer designs — helped Hyderabad-based Mehta uncover her ardour. Today, she “finds joy in looking for bits and pieces from heritage keepers of the past, and handcrafting them into wild, unusual designs”. Recently, a single jhumka, a couple of items of an outdated necklace, some naths and nakshi jadas went into creating an attractive neckpiece. “My philosophy is mixing genres: South Indian with tribal, Mughal with Art Deco, thereby presenting tradition with a modern edge,” says Mehta, who sources from Kutch, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

With a brand new assortment prepared, that’s “full of colour and inspirations from Persian gardens”, she hopes the pandemic meaningfully shifts shopper behaviour in the direction of luxurious items. “The enquiries we are getting now are from more real collectors and people genuinely interested in responsible fashion, rather than aspirational buyers,” she says. From ₹Three lakh onwards, @swapna_mehta on Instagram

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