Trash to Trend (TTT) is an online platform dedicated to upcycling. The idea behind the platform grew out of the doctoral research of Reet Aus, a designer who has been experimenting with upcycling in fashion design since 2005. While the platform is initiated by the need to offer a solution for the ever-growing waste problem, it also focuses on sharing design ideas that have these four merits:

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Upcycled – at least 70% of the product should be made of secondary materials; meaning that the product offers a new value for the material which conventionally could be called waste. It means that materials are valued in the form that they already have, and no shredding or chemical recycling is necessary to produce new items.

Repeatable: each product should be designed in a way that the production can be repeated either by (1) bringing leftovers back into the existing production cycle, (2) using leftover materials by other producers in their production cycles (i.e. as industrial symbiosis) or (3) offering high-quality DIY instructions for making personalized product out of local secondary materials.

With high design quality: each product is highly functional and long lasting. With enough tailoring and craft skills and following the DIY instructions it should be possible to make the product with a professional look and feel.

Transparent: each product has it’s story about which materials have been used, who made it and where did it come from. Having the three merits described above means that it is also possible to give facts and figures about how much, and in what way, the environmental impact has been reduced.

Textile fabric and product leftovers can be a head-ache for producers, retailers, waste sorting facilities or any other organization that finds irregular and unplanned, but sometimes quite large volumes of good materials at hand with no good idea what to do with them. TTT aims to create a network to respond to such moments, and to help grow the market value for homogeneous materials. Waste mapping will soon be part of the TTTT platform – showing what kind of waste is available for designers though an interactive map.

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TTT also offers an e-shop showcasing designers who have dedicated their work to upcycling.

Check out the Trash to Trend website here.