March 18, 2018

Revisiting: Refashioned

Photos ⎮ kuvat:   "ReFashioned: Cutting-Edge Clothing from Upcycled Materials"

ENG It's Global Recycling Day, and to celebrate I'm revisiting some themes I've explored during my five years of blogging. ReFashioned: Cutting-Edge Clothing from Upcycled Materials by Sass Brown (Laurence King, 2013) is a beautiful book, just read Natalie Chanin's (Alabama Chanin) foreword:

"During my years of working in the fashion industry, I have seen first-hand the effects of newer, faster and 'better' ways of living and buying. Ultimately, choosing faster and cheaper can equate to unwitting disregard for humanity and the environment. 
It is often much easier to consume what is convenient without thinking too much about the larger impact or consequences of our chooses – particularly the continuing use of toxic chemicals, haphazard disposal of these wastes, unprotected workers and unsafe practices. These conditions simply cannot be sustained long-term if we are to continue living on this beautiful blue planet. As globalization makes our fashion production more and more transparent, we are no longer blind to manufacturing methods. As the processes become understood by the end consumer, customers begin to make choices.

Patti Smith once said, 'I choose Earth'. I see a future where we all choose Earth. 

I applaud the work of Sass Brown and all the designers and innovators who are working toward that future. I believe that the greater 'machine' can be slowed and reined in, and that beautiful ways of working can grow from that restraint. Those outlined in this book are individuals and companies that make me hopeful and are making a difference in the world today. 
For instance, the work of MAYER Peace Collection includes handcrafted tailored jackets and coordinating separates made from antique fabrics, and perfectly illustrates the beauty that comes from upcycling material. Piece x Piece offers a personal response to the overwhelming amount of waste produced by the fashion industry by using waste cuttings from other garments producers. What would traditionally be considered trash and would find its way to a landfill is now the basis of stunning limited-edition pieces of clothing. As I read through Sass's book, I clearly see beautiful new values emerging on every front. 
My journey with textiles spans my entire life, beginning with memories of my grandmother's sewing circles during humid summers in northern Alabama. The magnificent quilts made then are now considered valuable treasures, but were commonplace and practical at that time.

These women 'upcycled' out of necessity, using fabric taken from salvaged flour sacks and outgrown Sunday dresses that had seen their last wearing.

While these seamstresses surely never used the words upcycled, recycled or sustainable design, their common-sense approach and practicality are characteristics we should emulate and applaud. 
My experience of over a decade with my company Alabama Chanin tells me that recycling and repurposing texts lends to the complexity, artistry and value of a finished design. As people, our many roles change and evolve over the course of a lifetime; I love the idea that textiles can do the same. Sass Brown's work proves that reviving something in order for it to serve a new purpose can be a beautiful act of conservation, design and art.

FIN Tänään on maailmanlaajuinen kierrätyspäivä, ja ajattelin juhlistaa sitä nostamalla esiin joitakin teemoja, joita olen käsitellyt viisivuotisen blogiurani aikana. Sass Brownin ReFashioned: Cutting-Edge Clothing from Upcycled Materials (Laurence King, 2013) on kaunis kirja – riittää, että lukee Natalie Chaninin (Alabama Chanin) esipuheen (yllä).

Love, Katja K.

Revisiting: Artek 2nd Cycle

Photos ⎮ kuvat:   Sini Pennanen (Sininen Kuva), published in a Business Finland article "Artek: Manifesto of a 21st Century Design Company"

ENG It's Global Recycling Day, and to celebrate I'm revisiting some themes I've explored during my five years of blogging. Artek's 2nd Cycle was one of my first topics as a blogging novice five years ago – I would never give up my secondhand Artek!

Later on I bumped into the following interview (excerpt) of Mirkku Kullberg, former managing Director of Artek, on Northern Delights. Scandinavian Homes, Interiors And Design (Gestalten 2013) – also published five years ago:

"Please explain the idea behind Artek's 2nd Cycle Project. – Artek 2nd Cycle was a manifesto against the madness of Milan 2007 and the fair buzz in general: the press, dealers, and consumers were running after newness and the latest of the latest. Artek had been blamed often for showing the 'old' Aalto icons and nothing new. Our question was: so what if we think that old is better than most of the new things out there? 
In 2007, the word 'sustainability' was quite new, while the whole design scene was dancing tango with fashion – fast and furious. Artek wanted to challenge the whole scene and declared Sustainability as Attitude and started talking about authenticity and origin of the design. We wanted also to talk about quality and design as an investment. Artek is the only company that can really own the second-hand market as we still have the same production, same standards, and systems with product components. 
The main idea behind 2nd Cycle is to talk about longevity and durability – the main factors when talking about sustainability. Our motto is "One Chair Is Enough", meaning that the Artek product can live from one generation to the next one without losing its value or identity. The design, the beauty, and the quality stand for time. We also think that people need layers in their lives. 2nd cycle is an excellent way of combining the old and the new. This gives people wider perspectives.

FIN Tänään on maailmanlaajuinen kierrätyspäivä, ja ajattelin juhlistaa sitä nostamalla esiin joitakin teemoja, joita olen käsitellyt viisivuotisen blogiurani aikana. Artekin 2nd Cycle oli yksi ensimmäisistä aiheistani aloittelevana bloggaajana viisi vuotta sitten – minä en koskaan luopuisi kierrätetyistä Artek-huonekaluistani!
Myöhemmin törmäsin Artekin entisen toimitusjohtajan Mirkku Kullbergin haastatteluun Delights. Scandinavian Homes, Interiors And Design (Gestalten 2013) -julkaisussa, samoin viiden vuoden takaa, ja olen lainannut siitä englanninkielisen katkelman ylle.

Love (secondhand), Katja K.

March 16, 2018

Recycling Day & Dates

Photo ⎮ kuva:   Katja K. – I'm planning the first bicycle trip of the year in the beginning of April, can't wait! (Quote: Albert Einstein @ N'Avetta)

ENG A great weekend and spring ahead! Sunday, 18 March is Global Recycling DayAnd I feel like saving other dates as well! Mark your calendars!

Like me, you might have missed the Circular Electronics Day on 24 January that highlights the positives of making sure that electronics have a second life instead of collecting dust in a drawer but we can compensate on the following days, and many more to come! – I've been reading Sanna Wikström and Jutta Gustafsberg's pep talk book "Tsemppikirja" during my commute to work this week, and somewehere among the book's 52 maxims it says: "Happiness does not arise from maximizing your own good at the expense of others" ... 

18 March

Global Recycling Day
Click on the link to learn more on the Seven golden rules of recycling and the "seventh resource", that is, the goods we recycle every day (the six primary resources are water, air, coal, oil, natural gas and minerals). "It is time we put the planet first and all commit to spend 10 more minutes a day ensuring that materials are disposed of properly." President of the Bureau of International Recycling, Ranjit Baxi

22 April
Earth Day 2018
Earth Day is the largest civic-focused day of action in the world, with more than 1 billion people in 192 countries taking part every year, but did you know that it was as early as 22 April 1970 that millions of people first took to the streets to protest the negative impacts of 150 years of industrial development? (I didn't... ) 

23-29 April

Fashion Revolution Week
Fashion Revolution week and #whomademyclothes campaign remind us of the Rana Plaza factory collapse killing 1,138 people and leaving many more injured on 24 April 2013.

FIN Hieno viikonloppu ja kevät edessä! Sunnuntaina 18. maaliskuuta on Global Recycling Day! Ja minusta tuntuu, että haluan laittaa kalenteriin myös muita päivämääriä! Kalenterit esiin!

Kuten minäkin, missasit ehkä Circular Electronics Day -päivän 24. tammikuuta, joka kannustaa antamaan elektroniikalle toisen elämän sen sijaan, että se jäisi keräämään pölyä pöytälaatikoihin, mutta voimme korvata vahingon alle listattuina päivinä – ja lisää on tulossa! – Olen tällä viikolla työmatkoilla lukenut Sanna Wikströmin ja Jutta Gustafsbergin Tsemppikirjaa, ja jossakin, kirjan 52 tsemppilauseen joukossa lukee myös: "Onnellisuus ei synny siitä, että maksimoi oman hyvänsä muiden kustannuksella"...

18. maaliskuuta
Maailmanlaajuinen kierrätyspäivä
Napsauta linkkiä lukeaksesi kierrätyksen seitsemästä kultaisesta säännöstä ja "seitsemännestä resurssista", eli tavaroista, joita kierrätämme joka päivä (muut kuusi ovat luonnovaroja: vesi, ilma, hiili, öljy, maakaasu ja mineraalit). "On aika asettaa maapallo etusijalle ja sitoutua käyttämään 10 minuuttia kauemmin päivässä varmistaakseen, että materiaalit hävitetään asianmukaisesti." Ranjit Baxi, Bureau of International Recycling

22. huhtikuuta
Earth Day 2018
Earth Day on maailman suurin kansalaiskeskeinen toiminnan päivä, johon osallistuu vuosittain yli miljardi ihmistä 192 maassa, mutta tiesitkö sinä, että jo 22. huhtikuuta 1970 miljoonia ihmisiä osallistui ensimmäisen kerran protestimarsseihin 150 vuotta jatkuneen teollistumisen kielteisiä vaikutuksia vastaan? (Minä en...)

23.–29. huhtikuuta
Fashion Revolution Week
Fashion Revolution Week ja #whomademyclothes-kampanja muistuttavat meitä Rana Plazan tehtaan romahtamisesta, kun 1 138 ihmistä kuoli ja sitäkin useampi loukkaantui 24. huhtikuuta 2013.

Love, Katja K.