As you know, MORICO was founded on the aim that the future of fashion should be circular instead of linear, and no material should go to waste at any point. The goal of creating a circular fashion label is to minimize its impact on nature. That is why in a circular fashion industry, waste and pollution are designed out, products and materials are kept in use for as long as possible through reusing, recycling, and different services.
17,6kg of cutting waste recycled
Recently, we had an amazing opportunity to collaborate with Wasteless Wonders and improve the waste management of our manufacturing process. In short, WastelessWonders created special pieces out of our cutting waste.
In the future, a possible improvement we are considering to continue this collaborative work towards zero waste would be to include Valentina’s patterns so that these pieces could be cut along with the pieces cut for MORICO’s products. The waste of fabric generated by MORICO then would be planned in a very efficient way and the use of fabrics would be much more optimized. In other terms, Wasteless Wonders wouldn’t intervene after the cutting phase, but its intervention would be anticipated and included in the cutting phase. Check these out!
Based on three large boxes of MORICO production scraps, the products below were developed from the various size scraps. From the inital material, only a few large pieces of fabric are left. Everything else went into or inside these products.
Scraps from the Ocean Green velour of MORICO’s Needleleaf collection, the Kultakero organic cotton or the Kaarnikka velour of the Hiding Sun collection have been upcycled to create lovely pillows, rugs, pouches, bags or hats.
Meet Valentina, the hands and brain behind Wasteless Wonders
M: Hey Valentina, we’d like to celebrate you as a fellow female entrepreneur advocating for a more sustainable fashion industry. Could you please introduce yourself to our dear MORICO-friends?
V: I'm a multi-disciplinary designer with a background in interior design and applied arts. I'm originally from Germany but moved to Finland about 6 years ago to study for my MA at Aalto University. I have been making things by hand for as long as I can remember, which is why I went into the design field in the first place and it is also what led me to start Wasteless Wonders. I wanted to create a home textiles brand that is really celebrating the handmade aspect and using it as a tool to recycle all different types of waste materials and therefore making a very low impact or even positive impact on the planet.
M: How did you get this brilliant idea? Were you inspired by other projects? What are the other initiatives that you find really innovative in the slow fashion and circular economy field?
V: Wasteless Wonders is in a way a continuation of my Master's thesis project, where I designed a little mobile workshop and kiosk to recycle old sweaters back into yarn by unraveling them. I still use this method today, just the type of products I make now is quite different from back then. I am really inspired by everything that is happening in the sustainable and slow fashion industry. One brand that comes to mind that I really admire is Bridge & Tunnel from Hamburg, Germany. They are making all kinds of clothing and accessories from used denim, overstock and reject items, while being a social start-up as well, employing socially disadvantaged people and refugees in their production.
M: Could you explain briefly how Wasteless Wonders works? Who is it for?
Wasteless Wonders has two faces in a way. There are our original collections, which are created completely free, based on the materials we can find in the local recycling centers, secondhand stores or online secondhand marketplaces. These collections are usually available to order on our website, based on a made-to-order model, where the customer can choose their own favorite colors and materials for the final piece. The other side are our B2B collaborations, where we work with other small and larger businesses and their production offcuts. The result of that collaboration really depends on the material we receive, what kind of products we can make with them and also what fits best into the practices and business model of the collaboration partners.
M: So far, how much waste have you recycled and what are your goals for 2022? (or 2021 or 2021 if you prefer)
V: Including the collection with MORICO, we are currently at 38,5 kg of waste. In Finland, around 1,5 kg of textile waste are landfilled per person every year, so we have only made up for about 25 average Finns. It doesn't seem like much, but you have to remember, every single item on our collection page adds to this total. This just shows how much waste is generated and how really urgently we need change. Our goal is of course to keep recycling as much as we can and hopefully at the same time show what wonderful things can be made from waste and how valuable waste materials really are. Wasteless Wonders is still a one-person operation, so hopefully in the future we can expand to keep more and more textiles out of the landfill.
M: How was the collaboration with MORICO: What do you think of the fabrics you worked with and how did they inspire you?
V: The collaboration with MORICO was really great in the sense that it was very free. I received three large boxes of production cutoffs and some studio scraps that I could turn into whatever suited the material best. The fabrics were mostly a very shiny dark red and petrol velour and a fun light pink patterned knit fabric, that had a nice brushed white back side. The velvet immediately inspired me to create some pillows and clothing accessories, both for the luxurious look but also the really soft feeling. There were a lot of long, narrow and triangular shapes that formed the base of many of the designs. All the scraps that were too small made up the filling of the decorative pillows, so I can proudly say, of those three boxes there is not a single scrap left.
We hope this will spark your interest and that in the future we will see more and more brilliant initiatives such as Wasteless Wonders in the fashion industry and everywhere else. Please, let us know any other projects supporting the zero waste culture that you love!