Reclaim is an ethical brand from the UK making cool bags and accessories recycling rubber from tyres. Yes!! You heard right! From TYRES! Would you like to know more about how all this started?
So we hope you enjoy reading this interview!
1. When and why did you start your project/brand Reclaim?
The brand was born whilst I was studying at university, working on a project based around innovation and innovative materials. The rubber material was found when I was exploring the materials that I could use within this project.
2. Why tyres?
As mentioned the rubber material was something I stumbled upon. I really fell in love with the versatility of the material. It is very tactile, but also a very strong, hard wearing material. The material was also only otherwise going to be discarded so it was a bonus that I could save it and give it a second life.
3. What inspires you to make your designs?
The designs are always based around functionality foremost, but I like to look architecture and structures for inspiration on shape and particularly how they are constructed always interests me. I like to stay in tune with the fashion industry and current trends too. This enables me, I hope, to try and bridge the gap between being able to buy ethically without compromising on contemporary design. I think there are still reservations with ethically produced products and I want to reduce those.
4. What kind of tyres do you use and where do you get them from?
The rubber material that I use is the inner tubes from the inside of larger tyres, such as tractor and lorry tyres. The bigger the inner tube the better as it then means I have a larger piece of material to use for the patterns. I am really lucky that there is a surplus supply of these tubes at local mechanics so I can always source the material.
5. Tell us a little bit more about the unique way you have to put together or sew your bags and accessories?
The bags are all put together using a method I have coined the ‘interlocking method’. It involves cutting the patterns in a certain way creating opposing tabs on two sides that will fit together, creating a strong bond. I love using this method because of the interesting t shape design it creates down all the adjoining edges.
6. Why do you think that up cycling is so important nowadays?
I really believe that we need to move away from the fast-fashion culture and buy products that will last and that can be treasured. I think there is a movement of sustainable designers at the moment, forging the way forward which is fantastic and this needs to continue.
7. What are your plans for the future?
I have a big love of all accessories and am currently expanding into jewellery pieces which is something that I have wanted to do for a while. I am building the collection at the moment and it will be ready for the SS17 launch in March.