Recently, TRAID started a partnership with Patagonia, an outfitter that makes clothes and equipment for silent sports. Their main focus is on sports such as rock climbing, hiking, skiing, snowboarding, surfing, fly fishing and trail running. Being a silent sport means these are sports do not depend on motors or cheering crowds to survive. Patagonia is committed to respecting nature and creating a life-long bond between it, consumers and athletes.
TRAID began working with Patagonia in August 2012. Bonded in their common interest to fight the environmental and social degradation caused by the supply chain, TRAID staff began meeting with the Patagonia store manager to set up clothing banks and workshops within the Covent Garden shop.
From there, Patagonia started encouraging their customers to donate any Patagonia items that have worn out over the years to TRAID for upcycling. Since Patagonia has an Ironclad Guarantee on all of their items, donating imperfect or old items is easy for consumers to do because if the products they purchase from Patagonia start malfunctioning or they are unsatisfied with the product, Patagonia will replace, repair or refund the customer.
Once the items began rolling in, TRAID masterminds got to work with taking old, worn jackets and turning them into something innovative and recycled. After weeks of trial, error and success in the studio, a final project was released. From an old rain jacket (in which the waterproof lining was starting to deteriorate) TRAID staff made a rucksack. Full of inspiration and feelings of accomplishment, the TRAID team decided to pitch it at the very first Sew Good workshop at Patagonia.
On the 20th of October 2012 TRAID set up shop in Covent Garden to educate consumers about upcycling clothes as well as elevate their sewing skills. The workshop was a massive success and participants were able to make anything from the featured rucksack to pencil cases and bags out of jackets, liners and other bits of textiles that were donated from Patagonia. The Patagonia staff members at the Covent Garden shop were extremely welcoming and helpful for the entire workshop.
The Sew Good workshop and rucksack were such successes that TRAID was recognized by the Patagonia head office in California, US. So inspired by TRAID’s success with reusing their old materials into making new, functional equipment Patagonia decided to donate all of the returns from the Patagonia retail shop in Covent Garden to TRAID! In addition, they’ve asked us back to do workshops at the Covent Garden location once a month throughout 2013. So, keep a watchful eye open for the next one! We’ll post updates on here and through our Twitter and Facebook feeds.
The TRAID clothing bank remains in the Patagonia shop so, if you work in Covent Garden or find yourself in that neighborhood feel free to donate your clothes! One of our friendly drivers will come pick them up once the bank is full – which we hope will be frequently. You can find Patagonia at 6A Langley Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9JA.