In case you missed it, we had our first pop-up with Fashion District Festival. But along with our pop-up, we were lucky enough to host three workshops with Alterist designers Maribel Skelly from Sackito Bags, Smart Urhiofe from Not Far Behind, and Corinna Francavilla from Nina.
Our workshops were a chance to bring people together, learn new skills and celebrate the craft of upcycling.
Each of the workshops hosted reflected the brand characteristics and designers ethos, you can find a bit more about them below.
By Maribel Skelly, founder of Sackito Bags
Led by Maribel Skelly, the founder of Sackito Bags, participants had the opportunity to learn the art of upcycling reclaimed coffee sacks into hessian table mats during this exciting workshop.
The coffee sacks used in the workshop were sourced from various parts of the world and showcased vibrant and captivating prints. These prints displayed the logos of coffee farmers and producers, adding a unique touch to the upcycled creations. All the coffee sacks used in the workshop were handcrafted using natural hessian or jute fibres.
Each pre-loved material was sourced through organic practices, which reduced water usage and avoided the use of chemicals and pesticides. As a result, the upcycled table mats were completely compostable and environmentally friendly, aligning with sustainable and eco-conscious principles.
The event brought together like-minded individuals interested in crafting and sustainability. Where they had the opportunity to get crafty, learn new skills, and make a positive impact on the environment.
Sackito, founded by Maribel Skelly, is a small social enterprise dedicated to recycling, upcycling, and sustainability. Reclaimed coffee sacks are transformed into beautiful shopping bags, preventing them from ending up in landfills. The bags are produced in collaboration with inmates at HMP Pentonville in London, providing them with work experience and wages. Proceeds from bag sales support training and education programs within the prison, and £1 from each bag sold is donated to StandOut, a charity helping individuals transition out of the criminal justice system in London.
By Smart Urhiofe, Founder at Not Far Behind
This workshop, led by designer Smart Urhiofe, the founder of Not Far Behind, was designed to help participants master the art of creating the perfect collar for new or upcycled garments.
During the workshop, attendees had the unique opportunity to learn the art of drafting a simple collar from scratch. Whether they were beginners looking to enhance their sewing skills or experienced individuals seeking more challenging projects, this hands-on session provided valuable insights and techniques.
The workshop immersed participants in the process of taking accurate measurements, creating precise paper patterns, and bringing their unique collar designs to life on paper. Smart shared essential tips and tricks to ensure that the collars were crafted with precision and elegance.
This immersive experience allowed attendees to gain confidence in their sewing abilities and walk away with a newfound mastery of collar design.
Smart Urhiofe is an artist and the mastermind behind Not Far Behind – a hip, eco-friendly brand that champions slow fashion. With a keen eye for design, Smart crafts stylish unisex pieces using dead stock and up-cycled damaged fabrics. After graduating from the prestigious London College of Fashion, he’s worked on a plethora of exciting projects, both collaborative and personal.
Corinna Francavilla, the founder of the independent brand NINA, lead an enjoyable and creative upcycling workshop where participants were able to create their own version of a popular NINA top. Each top was crafted using, preloved tea towels and repurposed cotton tablecloths.
During the workshop, attendees were presented with a carefully curated selection of vintage materials, getting to choose a pattern or print that they loved. Corinna expertly guided participants through each step of the process, regardless of their sewing experience, making it accessible to everyone interested in crafting their own beautiful top.
The hands-on session allowed participants to learn new skills while repurposing materials in a sustainable and creative way. By the end of the workshop, each attendee had crafted a unique and fashionable top. The event offered a fun and fulfilling experience for all, leaving everyone with a sense of accomplishment and a one-of-a-kind garment that they could wear out that evening.
NINA is an independent small brand designed and crafted in East London by Corinna Francavilla. Her Italian roots heavily influence her designs; the fabrics and flavours of the alpine mountains are woven through each piece she creates. NINA specialises in upcycling tea towels and tablecloths into funky and colourful one-off garments.
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28th July 2023