Each year, the US produce over 16 million tons of textile waste, with Only 9- 15 percent of which was reclaimed for recycling. Decomposing Clothing left in landfill releases methane, a harmful greenhouse gas, accelerating the effects of climate change.

HOw do we stop this growing problem?


Make the world a cleaner place. Reducing textile waste by learning how to care, mend and repair properly. Or get inspired by some of the worlds most creative upcycle fashion Designers from our lifestyle feature.


Reducing waste

Unwanted textiles and sewing supplies are often donated as a last resort before being thrown out. It is advantageous to donate unwanted clothing and textiles to be resold, clothing that are in bad shape can be sold to become home insulation. Learning to care for your clothing can make them last longer, you can find many videos such as 10 Ways to Take Care of Your Clothes and Make Them Last Longer article.

We want to raise awareness of the growing textile waste problem and help reduce waste by using the swatches to make reusable bags. We also want to provide a source of inspiration and creativity with these kits.

Since the swatches are pre cut and not in a roll, they are often not thought of as having any monetary value. Sure some people can use these to make quilts but we are living in a time where we want to encourage people to be creative and to abandon single use plastics.


Zero Waste Tote making kits

These kits contains precut upholstery swatches with finished edges. These swatches came from an old department store that have since gone out of business. Most furniture stores that carries big ticket items will have swatches and most older swatches are thrown away in landfills.



Created in association with:

Dayton Sewing Collaborative

DSC is a non-profit job training facility and collaborative space with expertise in prototyping and small-run productions. With a mission to the combat textile wastes DSC upcycles textile waste into usable products.


Upcycled Products:

Old theatre vinyl banners are repurposed to make messenger bags and Elves costume were made using donated fabrics and deadstock.



PDF instructions

What’s in these kits?

Colors, patterns and textures of the swatches and combination makes each kit unique. These swatches are 100% Wool, pre-cut with finished edges. The materials are soft and very sturdy, perfect for making bags.


What you need to start?

Sewing machine (home or industrial machine), Neutral color thread (range light grey to black), seam ripper (in case you make a mistake), heavy duty sewing needle might be required when attaching handles with bag body.

Feeling Creative?

There is no right or wrong when it comes to being creative. We encourage you to remix the tote kit to come up with your own style but ask that you respect the environment by not creating excess waste.