Lynn Worsley from All Women Recycling is passionate about plastic recycling and has worked in this field for over 10 years winning many awards for her gift bottles. Wendren Setzer, from Wren specialises in stitching paper using a unique process that makes it durable and water resistant.
The plastic based fabric used on the outside the bag is called Polipet. Two local South African companies work together to use a recycled based plastic fibre (polyethylene terephthalate chips) that they make into a polyester fibre, similar to felt. 50 plastic bottle make one linear meter and no water or electricity is used in the manufacturing of either process, making the material sustainable and ecologically sound. Apart from keeping plastic bottles out of landfills and the ocean, the recycling of plastic also helps to create job opportunities as a source of income for informal collectors.
The plastic based fabric used to line the inside of the bag is called Stitch Bond. This fabric is a non woven 100% polyester fabric that is manufactured locally in Cape Town. The bulk of this product is part of a national recycling project where empty water and colddrink bottles are recycled. Polyester is also easily recyclable.
For All Women Recycling, this process has served to emphasise that alternative, sustainable textile production is possible and that we do not always have to rely on expensive, carbon intense, fabric or materials from other countries.
The paper that Wren is known best for is the same paper used to make cement packaging bag. This paper is collected as unusable paper rolls from printing factories in South Africa. This special paper is fused to fabric to make it stitchable and strong, and is coated with nano liquid glass (an environmentally friendly coating) to make it water resistant.
For Wren the process of taking an everyday material and challenging its perceived use and value is exciting.
A bag has got to be practical when you are using it for travel.
The inside has two large open pockets so that the contents of the bag will always be organized.
There is also a 25cm waterproof zip pocket. Let’s just say that, if your shampoo leaks, your clothes aren’t going to know about it.
The base of the bag is reinforced with a removable covered board base. This makes it easier to pack and organise, and keeps your clothes looking clean, smart and ironed.
The bag closes with a two-way zip so you can easily lock it and open it fully when you arrive at your destination.
Press studs on either side of the zip give you the option of clipping them down to make the bag a bit smaller.
All metal fittings are coated brass.
The strap is long, adjustable and, thanks to the partial fabric covering, comfortable on your shoulder. If you prefer to carry the bag with two handles, all you have to do is unclip the strap.
Size-wise, it couldn’t be more perfect for hand luggage. We even checked with the folk at the airport, it’s exactly the maximum size allowed.
The height is 10,6‚”/27cm
The length is 19,7”/50cm
And the width is 11″/28cm
*It must always be remembered that Wren products made from paper and should not be left with water on the surface for an extended period of time.
**Like any fabric or paper product, a knife or scissors will most likely cut. It is best to keep the bag away from sharp objects that could cause damage.