Transforming Unwanted Goods to Useful Props
At Love My Mat it is our commitment to reduce waste by rescuing and repurposing second hand fabrics. We use fabrics that are reclaimed from thrift stores and deadstock suppliers to give them another life and save them from ending up in a landfill. We want to take you on a behind-the-scenes journey of a recycled fabric to show you how some of your favourite Love My Mat products are made.
For the Andy collection, the journey began at a thrift store. Shelley found this beautiful 100% cotton Queen size duvet cover second-hand and brought it back to our shop so we could upcycle it into a selection of eco-friendly yoga and meditation props.
As fabrics come into our shop the ethos of mindfully reducing waste continues in the way we handle and create our products. This process begins by machine washing our fabrics using cold water and plastic-free, concentrated laundry detergent strips. Once washed we quality check our second-hand fabrics for rips, holes, or any blemishes that remain from their previous life. This process usually means carefully cutting around imperfections to avoid them, or sometimes (for our Classic Bags, and Yoga Prop Bags) it means we create little heart patches out of the same material to discreetly mend the imperfections.
Before we start cutting into the material, we carefully measure and create a plan that will maximize the amount of product we can cut out while leaving the least amount of wasted material behind. When cutting our different products, pieces are cut from largest to smallest while going through our product list to cut as much as possible with the quantity of fabric we have. Working with small quantities of fabric means that we are always going to have a limited selection, making our precision and attention to detail important every step of the way.
To demonstrate how methodically we plan our cut lists to maximize product and reduce waste, when cutting the Andy duvet, every little scrap of fabric waste was saved to show you how much of the original duvet we were able to utilize. Out of this one Queen Size Duvet Cover we were able to create: 2 complete Yoga Prop Bags, the covers for 6 Large Therapy Bags, 4 Small Therapy Bags, 12 Eye Pillows, 4 Small Zipper Pouches, and 1 Fitted Face Mask. The total amount of waste from cutting (which includes the duvet’s original seams, hems, zippers/fasteners) was only 6oz of material!
Once we cut out our central Yoga and Meditation products, we are always looking to design and develop new items that can use up even more of the offcuts of materials. Our Fitted Face Masks and Zipper Pouches are perfect examples of how we design our “lifestyle” products that are made exclusively from leftover scraps! We enjoy developing new products that are beautiful, functional for everyday life, and twice recycled.
At Love My Mat we embrace a mindful approach to production where we prioritize recycling and reusing existing fabric, rather than purchasing new and contributing to the growing amount of the World’s textile waste. Creating in this way means that it does take longer for us to manufacture our products, however we believe that this slower and more thoughtful process is a more sustainable option to making.
We pride ourselves on producing high quality yoga and meditation props that you can feel good about. Our products are truly a labour of love, for our love of the Earth.