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Brazilian fashion label Re-Roupa is revolutionising the face of fashion and the lives of those who make the clothes by creating new collections entirely from upcycled materials, which are sewn by seamstresses from low-income communities.
The Rio de Janeiro-based clothing label is the brainchild of designer and creative director, Gabriela Mazepa. The designer collects fabrics from local factories that are otherwise thrown away – fabric roll ends, flaps, and clothes with small defects – and turns them into stylish, upcycled pieces.
It is estimated that in Brazil, about 170 thousand tonnes of textile waste are discarded per year. Around 85% of the textile waste is not recycled, and ends up in landfills.
Gabriela Mazepa says: “Re-Roupa is a project that proposes the creation of new clothes from raw materials that were considered waste. We believe it is possible to extend the life cycle of these existing clothings using innovative creative processes as a tool.”
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