Friday, April 22, 2011

REUSE Jeans: saving the planet is always in style

by frédérik sisa

The USA Water Polo Team – silver medal winners of the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, China – has just made REUSE Jeans its official denim wear. In itself, this sort announcement in a press release wouldn’t catch my attention. But on reading that REUSE Jeans is committed to sustainability and offering eco-friendly denim wear, all through a commitment to authenticity, my curiosity was piqued. Responding to the problem of textile waste – their website cites the EPA statistic that in 2006 alone, Americans generated 11.8 million tons of waste – REUSE offers jeans and other denim wear that are made from 80% recycled fabric.

Among their offerings for women are...

Boot cut jeans like Renewed ($95):

Skinny jeans, some with solid(ish) colours and others, like Tie Dye Destruct (95$), with patterns:

They also have some saucy little skirts and shorts of the Daisy Duke kind...

Recasted ($75):

Remake ($75):

And they even have a few attractive cropped styles with nice detailing, like Restored ($95):

For the prices and eco-conscience, REUSE certainly seems to be a brand ladies might find worth checking out when looking for some sexy piece of denim to wear.

But if being green isn’t enough, the press release also made an announcement that took my curiosity and, well, pick your cliché – pumped it up, took it up a notch, bam! Not only is REUSE the official denim-monger of the USA Water Polo Team, but they just launched a men’s collection. Huzzah! Included are styles like...



Unfortunately, at $140 - $45 more than their female counterparts – the men’s jeans are not so accessible. At least, not for the likes of my poor wallet. Another minor disappointment: no real variety in colours or styles. Other than a grey style, blue and indigo are the options. And forget skinny jeans or, for the really bold, tasteful flares. Still, what they do offer looks good and, hopefully, wears with wicked comfort like a $140 pair of jeans should.

In any case, I suppose one has to start somewhere; at the beginning. The recycled fabric concept is exactly what our poor planet needs, and overall they have stylish cuts. I’m hoping that by the time I’m ready to replace my own denim that REUSE will have expanded their men’s offering across styles, colours, and price levels.

But wait! As the infomercials say, there’s more! It would be perfectly natural to go beyond materials to ask, where are REUSE Jeans made? Before you say, under your breath, “not China,” the answer is…China. Before getting too disappointed, though, it’s worth considering their admittedly startling reasoning. From their website:
“As a region that has long been the center of inexpensive manufacturing, without regard to environmental preservation, China’s landfills are fraught with textile waste, while the air in many urban settings has been deemed unsafe. Notably, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, on certain days, one-fourth of the particulate matter (dust and soot) in Los Angeles originates from China. By helping to reverse the damage in China, we’re not only cleaning-up Asia, but we’re also contributing to a healthier Earth.”
Makes sense to me, and I think with that sort of innovative thinking REUSE Jeans is proving itself to be a brand to watch out for. Three cheers for eco-friendly fashion!

Note: Images borrowed from REUSE Jeans’ website for illustrative purposes only. Many thanks to Tricia Kent from Public Relations Divas for bringing REUSE to my attention.


Jenny H said...

What a great post for Earth Day and a great example of recycling fabric into something this is shockingly really attractive!

Frederik Sisa said...

Hi Jenny!

The timing, while accidental, was indeed perfect. It's always neat to discover brands that redefine fashion in socially responsible ways. :)

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