Upcycling Textiles

@Wallace Chuck

Upcycling is different from recycling, as it doesn’t require the destruction of the materials to create new ones. Instead, the materials are repurposed. A form of upcycled textiles is to manufacture products such as bags from used sails, kites, parachutes, tents, banners, airbags and plastic boats. Another practice is to use textile surplus from industries to create new clothing, as is the case with Mai Bine (Romenia).


International (examples: Greece, Poland, Denmark, France, Romenia)

Difficulty level:



Every day, we discard products that no longer serve their original purpose, creating waste of materials and of the resources used in the production, such as water and energy. A lot of objects end up in landfill, contaminating the soil and water sources, or are incinerated, resulting in CO2 emission. Upcycling is a practice that uses creativity and technique to create new products with recuperated materials. As the material is not industrially transformed, upcycling requires less energy than recycling

How youngsters can get involved

Youngsters can replicate this initiative by following these steps:

  1. Identify sources for used materials
  2. Collect materials
  3. Upcycle (designing the products, sewing)
  4. Sell

Skills and Competences

  • upcycling
  • sewing
  • using tools
  • knowledge on different materials used to produce bags
  • design
  • creativity
  • innovative business models

How youngsters can get involved

 Salty Bag (Greece): https://saltybag.com/

Rebago (Poland): https://www.rebago.com/

Grünbag (Denmark): https://www.grunbag.eu/

La Virgule (France): https://lavirgule.eco/

Mai Bine (Romenia): https://www.maibine.eu/