5 Easy Pieces – The Upcycled Clothing Edition


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An explosion of clothing and a work of art!

An explosion of clothing and a work of art by Guerra de la Paz!

As part of a series called 5 Easy Pieces, we’ll be gathering our favorite upcycled, re-purposed, vintage and handmade stuff from around the web for you to buy or make yourself. Stay tuned for quick lists of 5 must-haves and get ready to wish you had thought of that.

A Dress Made of Tote Bags

A dress of tote bags. Who woulda' thought?! Looks great!

Tote bags aren’t just for groceries anymore. Made almost entirely of Envirosax tote bags, this intricately crafted piece was designed by Amit Ayalon, a graduate of the Australian Institute of Fashion Design (AIFD). The dress was unveiled at the Sun Dance Film Festival.

To learn more, visit Envirosax.com.

Cigarette Butt Fashions

Cigarette butt couture.

Cigarette butt couture.

Using thread made of cigarette butts and wool, Chilean designer Alexandra Guerrero wove together a few articles of clothing that are surprisingly stylish and fully functional. All of this doesn’t come without some effort of course. According to Treehugger, “The purification process begins with the cigarette butts going through autoclaves. They are then washed in a polar solvent, go through autoclave again, rinsed and dried, and, finally, shredded to create a wool-like material. The resulting liquid is also being donated to be tested as a biological insecticide.” Seeing the transformation of something so disgusting into something so beautiful is truly inspiring.

Discover other cigarette butt creations at Treehugger.com.

“Bio-Mimicry” Dress

Snakeskin out of wood chips?! So. Cool.

Snakeskin out of wood chips?! So. Cool.

Working with wood, designer, Stefanie Nieuwenhuyse, mimics snakeskin and stuns us with the involved process she goes through to make each garment. Cutting out little pieces of wood in precise, geometrical shapes, Stefanie successfully replicates that scale-y look. Not only is her process to be noted and praised, but she also only uses scrap plywood, so as not to further deplete nature’s resources.

For more on Stefanie and her project visit Behance.net.

M & M Wrapper Dress

Not sure which is better... the M&Ms or the wrappers?

Not sure which is better... the M&Ms or the wrappers?

Eating M&Ms is one of America’s favorite pastimes—or maybe we’re projecting. No matter, this dress made of approximately 600 discarded wrappers just makes us want to eat more to see if we can make anything nifty. From the mind of designer, Christina Liedtke, this is seriously trash to be treasured.

To learn more about confectionery couture, visit Ecouterre.com.

Paper Crane Dress

Wonder if you could still read the comics....

Wonder if you could still read the comics....

Yuliya Kyrpo folded 1000 paper cranes to put this bad boy together. Wow! Now that’s an incredible way to recycle newspaper.

To learn more about the paper master, visit Inhabitat.com.

Fill Us In

Tell us what’s missing, what we need to know and who is making heads turn and dice spin. Share in the comments!

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