Thinking / Tony Martinez
In much of the ongoing conversation about living local (sourcing local meats and seasonable vegetables, shopping with local retailers or doing our part to reduce, repair, reuse and recycle), there is a growing list of companies selling useable and high quality sustainable consumer goods as part of the expanding upcycle market. Are they “local?” Not necessarily, but they are getting consumers to think about how they can renew and reuse — even when they are in the market for new goods.
A New York Times article discussing upcycling sites Hipcycle. Hipcycle’s business plan is simple and straight forward: “Our goal here at Hipcycle is to offer upcycled products that are as attractive, durable, and otherwise as desirable as traditional equivalent products (if not more so).”
Closer to what we do for a living, Gorilla Sacks, an Atlanta-based company, takes vinyl billboard creative after it has been posted for a local showing and turns it into handmade, one-of-a-kind products like messenger bags and tote bags. Like they say on their site, “Gorilla Sacks are a unique, hip and affordable way to make our planet a little greener.”
Both organizations, and others like them, need to become options for us as we try to become smarter consumers.