Joanne Crocker is a girl after my own heart – She is so passionate about how our daily lives impact upon the planet, that she decided to do something about it. With a background in the homewares industry, she has just opened a new online store based in Sydney named Upcycle Studio. There, you can find all manner of smart looking homeware and lifestyle products from haversacks, to ottomans, belts and rugs ~ but the difference is that all are either upcycled, recycled, reclaimed or repurposed.
To celebrate the launch of Joanne’s store she is generously offering one State of Green reader the chance to win a floor rug from her Trash Garden collection valued at up to $400! (Entry details at the bottom of this page!!)
Before flying down to the bottom of this giveaway to sign up to win, Joanne provided us with a peek into her new business and the ethos and inspiration behind her new business;
1. Why did you decide to launch Upcycle Studio? I always had a love for good, innovative design that had a particular attention to detail. It’s easy in our era to become brainwashed and swept up into thinking that it’s ok to continue to consume in excess with little to no regard as to the consequences our decisions have on our planet.
Having come from a background in Interiors and buying for the Homewares industry for over 12 years, it became really evident that too many people just didn’t care. While there are many choices out there for those that want to contribute positively to our planet many of them are unaffordable or simply just overpriced. If we are going to make changes to our buying and consumption habits consumers need affordable choices that are easily accessible. With a shift in thinking at all levels from manufacturers, to retailers and finally to the consumer we can make the right changes so that eco friendly products are no longer a niche industry but a mainstream choice that becomes the norm. Strength in numbers I say. The more of us behind supporting and protecting our environment the better the prospects are for the planet and its future.
2. What’s your favourite product of the moment? The plastic bag ottomans and baskets. They’re hand woven in Cambodia from plastic bags that are reclaimed from streets, landfill and waterways. Once collected they’re washed, colour matched, cut into strips and then woven to create amazing and practical pieces that are super affordable. A 60cm ottoman removes 280 plastic bags from landfill which otherwise would have taken hundreds of years to break down. The final product is bright, durable, water proof and can be filled with your own plastic bags or better yet fill them with blankets, linen or towels for extra storage. An all-round great choice for eco-friendly, affordable, comfy seating that will brighten up any space.
3. Upcycle Studio is a brand new business. What are the highlights of being a new business owner? Anything that you invest late nights and countless hours in you have to love. The number one best thing about being a business owner is that you can pursue something that you’re passionate about, direct your energy towards what it is that you feel is important and hopefully make a difference.
4. What can we expect to see from Upcycle Studio in the future (any sneek peeks?) The most amazing bags from Katcha Bilek in England. Handcrafted from Inner Bike tubes and reclaimed seat belts, they are truly a work of art. Every piece is unique and special in its own way, making them an ideal purchase for someone looking for quality, craftsmanship and outstanding design. Messenger Bags, handbags, travel bags, clutches, wallets and belts. There is an incredible selection that will be hitting Australian shores very soon and all will be exclusive through Upcycle Studio.
5. Share with us your easy eco living tip: Think twice…think twice about what it is that you really need. Plastic is one of our biggest issues on the planet right now. It’s filling our landfills and our oceans quicker than our earth can process it. No one yet knows exactly how long plastic takes to completely break down, but scientists estimate between hundreds if not millions of years which makes it virtually impossible for us to simply make it disappear. Think really long and hard when you head out on your next shopping visit….Can you carry that takeaway on its 2 minute journey to the car without a plastic bag? Do you need to buy all of your produce pre-packed in plastic cartons and wrappers? Do you really need to consume all of your coffee and drinks in disposable cups and plastic bottles
every time you’re out and about, or can you invest in a reusable cup or bottle? It’s a small sacrifice for each of us to help make an enormous difference and if we’re all working together every little change is a step in the right direction.
~~ GIVEAWAY DETAILS ~~
To go in the draw to WIN your choice of an upcycled floor rug (Value up to AUD$400), please head on over to the Upcycle Studio store and tell us your favourite rug design in the ‘Comments” field below this post. The winner will be drawn at random on Sunday 5 May 2013 after 7pm. Goodluck!
NB: This giveaway is open to Australian residents only.