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Seljak Brand is accelerating the transition to the circular economy: our first impact report  

It's been 18 months since launching Seljak Brand so it feels like a good time to let you know how far we've come. In a nutshell: Last financial year we donated $9,135 worth of blankets to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Melbourne  Since launching, we've used 1072kg of waste material to make our blankets  About 2000 people have engaged with us in talking about circular models at conferences and events 100 000 Australians have been exposed to closed loop business practices thanks to the press we've received  We've crowdfunded $32,000 to help fund the research and development of using other businesses' textile waste to make more blankets. We're looking forward to continuing to explore systems change and ways to create beautiful and sustainable solutions for the future. It's...

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How it's made: the process of our recycled wool blankets

We make recycled wool blankets using offcuts from the factory floor – but how do we actually do that? Currently our recycled blankets are made at the same mill that the offcuts are produced. Other than our blankets, the mill spins and weaves fine wool blankets for their clients and customers. These are made from blends of virgin fibres such as merino, lamb's wool, alpaca, cotton and mohair. As the other blankets are produced, the mill collects the offcuts from the production process. This might be from the spinning or weaving stage, and can be from overruns, trimmings and scraps that aren't part of the final product.  Bales of offcuts ready to be shredded These offcuts are shredded in an industrial shredding...

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Practising non-attachment: at home with Emily Devers and NICO

Seljak Brand teamed up with multidisciplinary artist Emily Devers, of Frank & Mimi, and NICO, leaders in Australian ethical and sustainable fashion, to capture Emily in her studio and her home. Emily shared with us her thoughts about her practice, her spaces and why conscious consumption is important to her. Here's a little slice of her philosophy: What makes you connect with labels like NICO and Seljak Brand? What is there not to connect with! Our shopping choices have such a huge impact on how businesses treat people and our planet, and I truly believe that our strongest vote is with our dollar. When you put ethics first as a consumer, not only are you investing in an aesthetically pleasing, quality product that's made locally, but you are committing to an economy that's...

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This is what happens to our old clothes

As we run a crowdfunding campaign to make blankets from textile waste from Australian businesses, individuals have been calling to ask if they can contribute their old sweaters and blankets too.  We're not yet accepting used clothing but we decided to check out just how much used clothing there is, and what's happening to it now.  I drove out to The Smith Family's Villawood recycling centre in western Sydney to find out. The Smith Family was a charity established to provide support to disadvantaged people, often with material necessities like food and clothing. Upon deciding the most impactful way to break the poverty cycle is to support a child's education, The Smith Family is now helping tens of thousands of kids and their families through school. ...

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Exploring hand-woven silks in remote Assam: A throwback to our textiles journey across India

For three months in 2015, we travelled across India to explore its new and ancient craft techniques and manufacturing processes for weaving silk, wool and recycled yarn. We wanted to see how India produces textiles for which Australia does not have the expertise or equipment. We made our way across Rajasthan, Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh to visit The Fabric Social in the North Eastern states. The Fabric Social work with women in war torn areas to produce pieces the Australian market loves. Here are some reflections we wrote at the time... We boarded the train from Guwahati not knowing what to expect of The Fabric Social's weaving facility in Upper Assam, where we were headed. As part of...

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