Das Merch X Upcycling

UPCYCLING – These Companies Are Doing Better 

How smart brands use upcycling to create fabulous new products

We are always on the lookout for inspirational brands that care about the upcycling and the reuse of resources as much as we do. Whether it is a big company or a small emerging business: these brands impressed us with their actions. Therefore, we want to recommend them to you.

FREITAG – the pioneer

Often copied, never reached: that’s FREITAG. In 1993 brothers Markus and Daniel came up with a brilliant idea – fully upcycled bag. As graphic designers they needed a bag to carry all their designs and so they created the first FREITAG bag from a truck tarpaulin, discarded bicycle tubes and a safety belt. It was the beginning of an innovative path that has left its mark on the world. 

FREITAG committed itself to the circular economy principles and rejected the traditional corporate structures. Since 2014 FREITAG went even further by creating their own biodegradable raw material, called F-ABRIC. It is produced with minimal use of resources and is a perfect example of sustainability approach.

Fabric for freitag bags
Upcycled bag
Cutting fabric for upcycling

Kaffeeform – Fancy cup of coffee?

Countless espressos inspired the founder Julian Lechner to take a closer look at the coffee grounds and further applications for the alleged waste product. After some experiments, the first espresso cup made of coffee grounds finally came into existence. Today, Kaffeeform offers a variety of cup shapes to enjoy the daily coffee not only stylish, but also in a sustainable manner.

How is it made

Where do the coffee grounds for their cups come from? Quite simple: directly from the customer. This creates a new cycle here too. The company collects the coffee grounds for production on a daily basis at Berlin cafés and restaurants. Then Kaffeeform organises workshops where the shapely products are produced. How that looks like, you can see in the trailer of Kaffeeform – it is about an espresso long:

gabarage- Upcycling made in Austria

It doesn’t matter whether its garbage cans, bowling pins, truck tarpaulins, traffic lights or books – gabarage is everywhere. And that’s good! The club behind it turns bowling pins into vases and transforms escalator steps into sofas. But not only the materials get upcycled and a chance for a new future: the association is committed to social problems as well. Gabarage provides disadvantaged groups of people with work and training places to create the cool designs. Here are some cool gabarage designer pieces we’ve collected for you:

Upcycled vase
Upcycled product
Upcycled escalator