Upcycling with Teesside Hospice
ENTREPRENEURIAL young designers have embarked upon a charity challenge to transform castaway clothing into kitchen couture.
Cleveland College of Art & Design fashion and textile students are working in partnership with Teesside Hospice to upcycle unwanted clothes into bespoke household items to raise much-needed funds.
The Middlesbrough-based charity, which costs £2.2m each year to run, will provide the students with bags of denim jeans, unsellable in their charity shops, to be transformed into peg bags and designer aprons.
Retail area manager for Teesside Hospice Tracy ‘O’Donnell explained: “Sometimes we get items of clothing donated that we can not sell in our charity shops.
“It may be that there is a button missing or the item has been damaged so if it then fails to sell in one of our £1 outlets it would normally end up going to the rag man.
“The charity makes £100,000 a year from such items but recently we have been looking at other ways in which we could use the unwanted material to see if we could get more money for the hospice by upcycling it.”
The 50 first and second year students will be divided into teams and will each create peg bags and aprons from the jeans which the charity will deliver to the college each week.
The items will then be collected and distributed to the 14 Teesside Hospice shops, across the region, before being labelled with individual tags with the student maker’s name and put up for sale.
The Northern School of Art tutor Diane Watson said: “This is a great live project for our fashion and textile students.
“It helps them with their sewing and pattern skills, it helps reuse and recycle unwanted clothing and it helps the charity to make more money for the incredible work they do at Teesside Hospice.
“Cancer is something that affects everyone in many ways. Many of our staff members and students have been personally touched by the work that the hospice does and we are really please that they invited us to be part of their project.”
The charity has also set the students the challenge to create a specially re-designed outfit from recycled clothing to be modelled at Redcar Racecourse Ladies Day later in the year and get involved with volunteering in their shops.
Marketing manager for Teesside Hospice Debbie Coulson said: “We approached the college to see if they could help us with our upcycling project and never imagined they would be as helpful as they have been.
“This is a great opportunity to work together, raise funds for the hospice and give the students a sense of practicality to their studies with a real business venture.”
Student Katrin Campbell, 16, of Ingleby Barwick added: “My mum had cancer last year. She is alright now but lots of other people still need help and the hospice does an incredible job.”