Crafting Bio-waste to Fashion

Useful information

Team members
Riina Õun
United Kingdom
sustainable circular design bio-design bio-material biodegradable compostable environmental

Short Description

Crafting Bio-waste to Fashion.
From kombucha industry waste to organic vegan leather-like material.

Detailed Description

Reprocessing local kombucha drink industry organic side product into a market-ready sustainable vegan leather-like alternative.
Many people opt for buying non-animal products made of “vegan leather” for ethical concerns, unaware of this being actually just greenwashed PVC- and PU-based plastic, very harmful to the environment.
In the context of the climate emergency, the fashion industry must switch to more sustainable practices, utilising waste streams and concentrating specifically on more organic, natural and renewable resources.
The new biomaterial crafting possibilities are explored within a handbag collection, using different techniques – from traditional stitching to modular assembly up to liquid moulding.
Working closely with local communities the aim is to create a fully circular system where the organic material used for fashion accessories can be freely home-composted at the end of its life cycle, adding nutrients to the ground. Truly vegan and environment-friendly!

Project Details

Does your design take social and cultural challenges and human wellbeing into consideration?

Offering an organic and home-compostable material, working closely with the local community to utilise bio-waste into new material. Safe disposal of bio-material results in a cleaner living environment for humans.

Does your design support sustainable production, embodying circular or regenerative design practices?

The material is utilising bio-waste resources, is fully organic and safe to produce. It can be home-composted at the end of its life cycle, with a biodegradation rate of over 90% within 90 days.

Does your design use principles of distribution and open source?

Currently, a version of the material recipe is available on the Green Lab website:

Does your design promote awareness of responsible design and consumption?

The material is fully organic, could be theoretically safely reproduced in the home environment and is home-compostable. This agitates consumers to involve in the making process if they wish and removes the polluting factor of the disposal.



Social Media Accounts

Instagram: @riina.oun