Friday 7 June 2013
After The Rubber Hits The Road
Rubber is one of those materials that just keeps on giving. Sustainably sourced (it's a sap produced by rubber trees which can be harvested for years on end) and tough enough to be recycled in all sorts of different ways. We're big fans of Katcha Bilek's designs for belts and accessories that she sells online and at her Bristol stall, but plenty of other designers see the benefits in recycled rubber.
Sophie Postma runs Reclaim Bags, a one-woman operation that creates exciting new bags and clutches from the most humble of starting points: old inner tubes. These come to her in conditions ranging from reasonable to, erm, "scarred". Frequently rusty and filthy, the tubes undergo careful cleaning before being polished, cut and formed into Reclaim's distinctive and minimalist product line.
Up until very recently, you could have any colour as long as it's black. In the last few weeks, however, Sophie has been experimenting with PVC flaps and inserts in red and white, adding a whole new range of texture and pop to a limited edition run of clutches.
The way in which Sophie hides the Reclaim brand name in cutouts shows a playful nature that works well with the formal lines of her designs. They're fun accessories with a real sense of flair, and surprisingly affordable.
They're available online, and at the Reclaim stall at Spitalfield Market every Friday. Worth a trip if you're in the City Of London.