Seatbelts in Selfridges: The innovative use of post-consumer waste by BELO bags

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This article focuses on BELO bags: a British-Brazilian company, founded in 2017, that specializes in producing handbags and accessories from decommissioned seatbelts. Drawing on an interview with the company’s co-founder Charlotte Bingham-Wallis, the article considers the environmentally sustainable credentials of the brand – considering how their redirection of seatbelts from landfill, and emphasis on product aftercare, repair and repurposing, positions the brand within circular fashion systems. The article considers how BELO’s reappropriation of unwanted waste materials into highly coveted, new luxury fashion accessories, which has been further reinforced by a recently secured concession within Selfridges, can be seen as a fashion practice that celebrates waste as opposed to concealing it. It argues that rediscovering and elevating the value of waste is perhaps key to unlocking more sustainable textile practices within the fashion industry: as reappropriating and revaluing materials that are already in existence, via imaginative and creative reuse, offers two-fold benefits of reducing both ‘waste’ from landfill and the production and use of virgin fibres.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-197
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Sustainable Fashion & Textiles
Volume2
Issue number2
Early online date8 Sept 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2023

Keywords

  • circular economies
  • circular fashion
  • ethical fashion
  • luxury fashion
  • sustainable fashion
  • textiles

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