Seljak Brand recycles offcuts from factory floors to make warm, fashionable blankets.

Launched by two sisters in 2016, Seljak Brand was developed to reduce manufacturing waste in the fashion industry. The recycled merino wool used is made using offcuts from the factory floor of the oldest wool mill in Tasmania, Australia. The waste wool is shredded and re-spun into yarn, then woven into new products. Seljak Brand’s blankets are 70% recycled merino sheep wool, and 30% a blend of polyester and recycled alpaca wool.

The blankets are durable enough to be used indoors or outdoors. Every production run has a unique speckled appearance on the blankets, depending on what type of fabric was on the factory floor when sourced. If customers no longer need the blanket, they can return it to Seljak Brand who can recycle it to manufacture new blankets, adding a circular lifecycle approach. The company also donates one blanket to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Melbourne for every ten blankets sold.

Seljak Brand has crowdfunded $32,000 for research and development for creating blankets from other types of textile waste, and looks to partner with more companies in the future to source materials.

Why you should care

Much of the textile industry produces waste at the manufacturing stage, primarily from off-cuts of fabric that can’t be used elsewhere. Estimates of total waste from off-cuts range from 40 to 120 billion square meters of fabric. Seljak is one small example of a company actively thinking about how to unlock this potential value source. So far the company estimates to have diverted 2,000kg of textile waste from ending up in landfill.

How the Global Goals are addressed

Responsible Consumption and Production

An estimated 15% of all fabric intended for clothing is wasted in the manufacturing stage. Seljak Brand’s model aims to reduce this figure from wool textiles, and has received additional funding for research in other textiles.