We've all heard about the 3R's - Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.
At EcoDhaga, they look beyond the obvious 3Rs and try to encompass more in all that they do: Reduce, Reuse, Repair, Rethink, Reclaim, Repurpose, and Recycle. Read more about how EcoDhaga imbibes these values and how you can too with easy to implement mindset shifts.
So what are the 7R's. Let's have a look at them in detail below:
The first step in your sustainable journey should be refuse: saying no to buying things in a consumerist culture might be harder than we think. Reducing our waste output requires us to refuse additional purchase which have the potential to generate waste.
By thrifting wearables in excellent condition with EcoDhaga, we can reduce the resource demand for manufacturing new products, while still meeting consumer requirements of new styles to update our wardrobes.
Indian Mom's have mastered the art of reusing every last bit of resources at home. Whether it is inventing new dishes from leftovers, or using old t-shirts as a dusting cloth. Reusing material, any material, can help keep it out of our trash for longer, while extracting maximum use from it. Prefer reusable cutlery over disposables (even if biodegradable, there is enough trash being generated, and we can shift that by small degrees).
Here, the team at EcoDhaga works diligently to pick and segregate clothes according to their utility and potential. Depending on whether it is wearable or torn, they allocate it to the best department, to reuse it in the most efficient way possible.
If something breaks, we usually finds it easy to replace it, than to take out the time and energy to repair it. Can we at least try, out of minor inconveniences, to fix it instead of throwing away valuable resources?
EcoDhaga often receives clothes that are otherwise in excellent condition, but have minor wear and tear that can be fixed with simple repairs. They do their best to salvage these items and repair them discreetly. You can look for repair or damage disclosures on the thrift store listed items.
Rethinking your consumer habits is a starting point; figure out your needs vs. wants. A simple query like: I need to keep snacks at home, vs. I want to get branded packaged snacks. There are options available, but we must choose to rethink how and what we consume.
Team EcoDhaga works with limited resources and only relies on materials donated for their thrift store and upcycled range. They take it as a creative challenge to rethink ways to recycle, upcycle and use fabric to salvage textile from landfills.
This one requires us to reclaim resources that would otherwise be wasted. A broken cup can be made into a tiny fairy garden, instead of being disposed unsafely (it can cut the waste workers who might be unaware of what's in your trash bags). Use old denim to make home waxing strips (seriously!). Reclamation requires some effort and out of the box thinking!
As a circular brand, EcoDhaga's vision is to reclaim post-consumption fabric waste and intervene before the fabrics reach landfills. So far, they have collected and redirected 1200+ kgs of textile waste in Bangalore and are just getting started! Overall, this has saved 30,000 kgs of CO2 emissions in just 2021 (they, however, believe its barely a drop in where we need to get in terms of our CO2 emissions reduction globally).
If you really open up your imagination, old items including clothes can be repurposed within your own household too. How about turning your old dresser into a bookshelf? Cutting kitchen floor mats from old rugs/faded carpets? Turning old towels into surface cleaners?
EcoDhaga repurposes fabric and reimagines the best ways to use them, for example, turning torn clothes into their quirky cloth packaging bags and small products and gifts for their community members.
Recycling should be the last resort, not the first option when disposing our waste. Its a good option to have, don't get us wrong, but recycling takes a lot of effort, segregation and energy to accomplish. Tap into your kabadiwala or raddiwala network to recycle from your homes at ease.
EcoDhaga is also exploring fibre reclamation and recycling as a suitable way to prevent waste fabric from ending up in landfills. They have taken up the task of segregating our post-consumption fabric waste, and training and ups killing waste workers to help India's visions of achieving textile recycling. They truly endeavour to close the loop sustainably.
We all love brands that encourage and urge their community members to take this journey towards a more sustainable living, one step at a time. The 7 R's don't need to be daunting when you have friends, guides and companions as tribe EcoDhaga. Donate, Thrift, Repair, Restyle, Repurpose, Upcycle and Recycle with EcoDhaga today.