Large quantities of clothes that are damaged in textile manufacturing end up in landfills. To organizations like Renewal Workshop, that seems like a waste. So they are stepping up to the plate, with real benefits to the planet.
“As discarded clothing piles up in landfills around the country,” writes the Huffington Post, “a handful of companies are trying to save some of those garments and give them new life.
“The Renewal Workshop is one of these. It takes shirts, jackets and other items damaged during manufacturing, then repairs and resells them for 30 to 50 percent off the original price, co-founder Nicole Bassett told The Huffington Post. Its goal is to prevent imperfect items, which traditional retailers can’t sell in stores, from being tossed in the trash. …
“Companies fighting clothing waste have their work cut out for them. The average American throws out 70 pounds of clothing or household textiles a year. Only 15 percent of that is recycled, according to a report by the Environmental Protection Agency. The other 85 percent ― around 13 million tons of textiles in 2013 ― ends up in landfills, where it decomposes alongside other solid wastes, releases greenhouse gasses and contributes to global warming.
“The Renewal Workshop is attempting to combat waste in the textile industry by ‘closing the loop,’ or trying to ensure new clothes are made from recycled or used garments. … It creates every single one of its products out of existing garments.
“The company partners with apparel companies like prAna, Ibex and Toad & Co, which are all outdoor clothing brands selected specifically for their commitment to sustainability, Bassett told HuffPost.
“The Renewal Workshop takes those brands’ damaged or returned clothes ― items with broken zippers, seam tears or missing buttons ― and then repairs, cleans and resells them at a discount.
“Apparel partners provide damaged items at no cost to The Renewal Workshop, and pay a partnership fee. When a customer buys a repaired garment, the partner business that provided it gets a portion of the sales, and the customer receives an item with the original company’s brand label and a Renewal Workshop label on it.” Read more here.
And ordinary folks can always help by giving old clothes to organizations that distribute nice ones to new users.