Solving the Textile Waste crisis from India and one garment at a time, see how Shubhi Sachan is revolutionizing the waste processing and Material conservation and recycling with Material Library of India in an exclusive interview with Textile Value Chain.
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BEFORE TOO SOON, WHEN OUR NATURAL RESOURCES BECOME SCARCE & WASTE ACCUMULATION REACHES A TIPPING POINT, WASTE STREAMS WILL BECOME THE FUTURE QUARRIES FOR MINING MATERIALS.
Our practice is focused on investigating value chains and making waste materials come to life again. This is the rebirth of materials that were once exiled to towering landfills or incinerators.
Journey Till now
‘PEOPLE OFTEN THINK I LOVE WASTE, THE TRUTH IS – I HATE IT SO MUCH THAT I WANT IT TO END AT ITS GENERATION POINT.’
Shubhi Sachan is a multidisciplinary designer who works as a consultant for various companies. In 2014, she graduated with M.A. in Material Futures at Central Saint Martins’ School of Art and Design in London where she developed her projects such as Life of a bullet & Traditional Futures. These projects were focused on manmade & agricultural waste and its impact on our everyday life. Prior to this Shubhi has been working as a surface designer for brands such as Givenchy, Balmain, Alexander McQueen, Ralph Lauren, etc.
Shubhi has been a TEDx Speaker in 2018, a Lexus Design Award Finalist in 2018, CII Green Co. Best Practices Award in 2016. She has also been invited to present work at various prestigious platforms such as Lakme Fashion Week, Mumbai in 2017, Ambiente Talents at Messe Frankfurt 2017, London Design Week 2014 to 2016, Dutch Design Week 2015 & 2020. Roche Bobois Student Design Competition in Paris 2013.
Shubhi embarked on this journey to sustainability after spending six years of working with the fashion/textile industry and realizing the materiality involved in the process of making products vs the presentation of the finished objects. There was a huge disconnect between the two worlds, which eventually became the most unsettling feeling for us. Our current work is about channelising the post-industrial and agricultural waste, where we not only propose the alternative ways to use the materials but also to alter the conventional notion of waste being sent to landfill or incineration units.
Process Involved in Re birth of Material
We are focused on remodeling the use of industrial & agricultural waste materials by combining the knowledge and skills of traditional crafts with modern materials. In one process, the sophistication of traditional craft is capable of turning the most unrelenting of materials into fluid surfaces through complex weaves. The multitude of these creative processes can enable an organic transformation of industrial waste into usable products. At the Material Library of India, we are able to generate and sustain a latent value in industrial waste materials that can be harvested. This is a conscious step to encourage emerging makers to use these non-hazardous waste materials as legitimate resources to make everyday products, ranging from furniture to lifestyle accessories, from textiles to ceramics. Modern manufacturing not only needs to be clean but also environmentally friendly for future generations.
Share about your course on material literacy
Material literacy is an academic course designed by the Material Library of India. This course provides students from various disciplines an insight into our everyday materiality including the materials from various waste channels.The objective is to trigger creativity backed by Research and Development to fuse various waste materials and convert them into meaningful sustainable Products.
This benefits not only the environment but also provides a boost to the local economy by engaging small businesses, artisans, and craftsmen.
This program has been run at various institutions such as
Share about your Thrift Store
We run a thrift store named “ EX-CHANGE” where we collect unwanted/used/wornout/outgrown clothes .We want people to declutter their system as well as reduce the burden on the environment. We help them declutter these clothes jumping out from their wardrobe and give them a second life. After the collection we segregate the clothes into 3 categories , REUSE, REPAIR AND RECYCLE. The clothes which cannot be repaired and can’t be reused goes into further recycling.
We have been receiving immense support from our small community that we are building and the response has been great so far.
These are the 3 ways to buy-
Working with Corporate Brand
We have worked with multiple corporate sectors – 1.GODREJ 2. IKEA 3. Dr.Reddy’s Lab 4.Uflex 5. Dharma life
1.PUNĀH Project for Godrej
PUNĀH Project was commissioned for Godrej & Boyce in January 2015. From February 2015 till January 2017 an archive of 700+ waste materials from 39 facilities was rigorously categorized and cataloged. In parallel, thorough research on 9 materials was done to be able to come up with a product range and make a business case of these discarded / otherwise to be landfilled materials. PUNĀH Project was showcased on various platforms in India & internationally.
2.The Living Library for Seeds for Ikea Sweden.
Project was launched under IKEA Virtual Greenhouse and showcased at Dutch Design Week 2020.
Pharmaceutical waste turned into a streetwear label called Canceled Plans.
A brand owned and run by Mallika Reddy, second generation in the family run business of India’s largest pharmaceutical company called Dr. Reddy’s Lab.
We are in the process of formulating a PPP (Public Private Partnership) model with local municipalities.
Sustainability simply means conscious living. Reducing environmental harm and standing up for social issues are two of the key aspects to consider.