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Waste Is A Design Flaw - Sustainability With B&K

December 02, 2020 2 min read

Every year about 400 billion square meters of textile is produced. However, of all this fabric, 15 % doesn’t even make it to the market. This means that each year, around 60 billion square meters of unused textile ends up on the cutting room floor. At Bird & Kite we don’t like to see fabric go to waste. Every scrap counts. This is why we have decided to re-use the excess textiles that are left over from our production.
Clothing factory Bali

“Waste is a design flaw”

All fabric comes from the same roll, so why should it be treated differently? In the fashion industry, the process of making garments is generally done very quickly and the large portion of off-cuts that comes out of it are rarely recycled. Most of the time, the manufacturers chuck it in the bin and it ends up on landfill. What a shame! 
The good news is that excess fabric does not have to end up in landfill. At Bird & Kite we are firm believers that waste is not an inevitable part of clothing manufacturing, it is a flaw in the design. The textile that is left after production can be used to make other beautiful pieces, and can be used to add value in so many ways. As designers and fashion brands, we have to think consciously and creatively about how we design and produce our collections. First, we must consider how we can ensure that as little waste as possible is being produced, and second, we have to come up with new ways to use otherwise wasted fabric.

Headscarves and Scrunchies 

All our headscarves & complimentary scrunchies are made from production off-cuts, utilising what would otherwise head directly into landfill and turn it into a beautiful accessory to be worn many times over and for many years to come. Since they are made with the same fabrics as the styles in our collection, you can’t find a better accessory to complete your B&K look! Also, by producing headscarves, we are giving jobs to people in Bali. This has been an even more important aspect as of the this year, as many artisan workers have lost their jobs due the ongoing pandemic.
Headscarf and Scrunchie of excess material


Apart from making headscarves and scrunchies out of the fabric that is left from our production, we donate textile offcuts to local balinese women. These women recycle our offcuts and use them to weave“rag rugs” that they can sell. This helps them to provide an income for their families. Once the rugs are made, we buy some and use them… and that way it all goes around! We love that our waste is recycled and turned into something so useful and beautiful! 
Balinese Rag Rugs
We would love to hear your thoughts on this topic and are happy to answer any questions you might have on how we are working to minimise waste in our production. In the meantime, keep an eye on our journal and social media platforms to learn more about our ethical practices. You can also read more about our practices over on ourETHICS & ECO pages.

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