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How do you remanufacture blankets?

When we collect your old Seljak Brand blanket, we send it to the mill for remanufacturing. The mill has a ragging machine which shreds factory floor offcuts and old blankets. This shredded resource is then combed out until the individual fibres are separated. The fibers are then prepared for spinning. The spinning machine effectively twists the fibres together to create yarn. As the fibre is twisted and spun, we use polyester for the short, shredded fibres to catch on to. The resulting yarn is then woven on a loom into the next Seljak Brand blanket. Voila!

Will Seljak Brand ever really close the loop with these blankets? That is, I plan to have this blanket for a long time and can’t imagine I’ll be sending it back to the mill anytime soon.

By providing an end of life solution, Seljak Brand is taking the onus off you, the customer. We’re taking responsibility for what we’re putting on this Earth and have created a viable solution for what will happen when you no longer want the blanket. Remanufacturing ensures the blanket will retain its value, eliminate the need to use new, raw resources and reduce waste to landfill.

Before providing an end-of-life solution, designing a product that doesn’t age in the eye of the customer and lasts a lifetime is the most sustainable way to make goods. Seljak Brand blankets have been made at a mill that has been manufacturing for 150 years. The quality is paramount to the integrity of the product, so we believe you can have your Seljak blanket for life if you take care of it.

Fixing and repairing is also important ahead of remanufacturing. Only when the blanket has been repaired within an inch of its life is when it should go back to the mill for manufacturing. This is when we will close the loop by shredding the blanket to spin new yarn and weave more blankets.

Given some of Seljak Brand’s customers are businesses where the blanket gets used and washed consistently and therefore worn quickly, for example a hotel, there is the probability we’ll close the loop a lot earlier. For example, a hotel may purchase a bunch of Seljak Brand blankets and they may want to refresh the texture and even colour or style after a few years. In this situation we’d be able to deliver new blankets made out of their old ones.

Why are you using leather to make the blanket strap?

At this stage, Seljak Brand is using leather to manufacture our straps because of the longevity of the product and the locality - we can use Australian manufacturers. And like our blanket, these straps will last a lifetime. However, we understand that the animal agriculture industry is incredibly impactful and we are pushing to find alternatives ourselves. We’ve been prototyping a recycled PET strap (made out of recycled plastic water bottles) which we would manufacture if it proves environmentally viable and if we could close the loop. This would mean moving production offshore to China. Ultimately, we’re working toward making all of our products closed loop, including the leather strap.