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From rags to recycling riches

9 March 2022

Our fashion students and lecturers are proving to be not just fashion-conscious, but environmentally conscious too. With thanks to an exciting new initiative, our textile waste is now being upcycled by Australian company UPPAREL.

Previously, our fashion department generated a substantial amount of textile waste that was unable to be repurposed internally by our students and as a result, would find its way into land-fill.

Today, textile scraps smaller than an A4 piece of paper are placed in a new scrap bin system and sent to UPPAREL to be made into a range of useful products with our first donation of 50 kilograms of textiles being received by last month.

UPPAREL is a Victorian company that originally started by recycling old socks but have since expanded to now upcycle a range of textiles into quality, useful products as well as supporting organisations and charities with quality textiles needing no upcycling.

In less than 12 months of operation, UPPAREL has diverted over four million items of clothing, linen and shoes from land-fill, successfully converting them into recycled products such as socks, satchels and children's soft furniture.

By partnering with UPPAREL, NMTAFE is not only are being actively sustainable and supporting Australian upcycling initiatives, we are teaching the next wave of professionals by integrating the upcycling system into our fashion and textiles student curriculum.