Tuesday, February 4, 2014

What is Upcycling?

      The term, Upcycling, has been around since the mid-90's, but it has gained popularity within the last few years. According to Upcycle Magazine the term was brought to the public knowledge and interest by William McDonough and Michael Braungart in 2002 (UpcyleMagazine, 2009, http://www.upcyclemagazine.com/what-is-recycling). They wanted to encourage consumers to extend the lives of their belongings instead of throwing them out. Upcycling refers to recreating an existing item into a new and unique product, thus extending its life. Items that are used in upcycling will be spared from discard and thus eliminate waste put into the landfill. Stevie Wilson, a world-renown blogger of LA-Story, says, "As 'the people's stylist' Barbara Horowitz says- that if you can't recycle it into something you would wear, then recycle it out of your closet. No trash cans here!!" (Wilson, 2013). This is your cue to experiment with upcycling, whether it be transforming a pair of jeans into cutoff shorts, combining beads from different necklaces into one, or refashioning a t-shirt. There is something to cater to everyone's interest. Wilson's article, " Give Old Tired Boring Clothing New Life & Get Karma Points by Tossing Clothes into a Planet Aid Bins!, states, "According to recent statistics, the average American throws away 70 lbs. of clothing every year, sending a total of 11.1 million tons of textiles straight to the landfill!" (Wilson, 2013). People often do not realize the harm they are causing when they place clothing in the landfill. If people do not want to take the extra effort to take clothing to a resale shop or Goodwill, they can place their unwanted, ragged or dirty clothing and shoes in a Planet Aid Bin. For more information, see this article: http://la-story.com/2013/04/give-old-tired-boring-clothing-new-life-get-karma-points-by-tossing-clothes-into-a-planet-aid-bins/

What is upcycling? (2009, January 15). Upcycle Magazine, Retrieved from http://www.upcyclemagazine.com/what-is-upcycling
Wilson, S. C. (2013, April 02). [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://la-story.com/2013/04/give-old-tired-boring-clothing-new-life-get-karma-points-by-tossing-clothes-into-a-planet-aid-bins/

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