Reuse and Upcycle Challenge

Fashion is responsible for 10% of annual global carbon emissions and generates over half a million tons of plastic microfibres each year which make their way into animals and plants in the food chain. Currently, over 5% of the UK’s total annual carbon and water footprints result from clothing consumption. But if you keep your clothes in active use for nine months longer this will reduce their carbon, water and waste footprints by 20-30%.

Every year an estimated 336,000 tonnes of used clothing gets thrown in the bin in the UK.  87% of the total fibres in clothing is burned or disposed of in landfill.

This year’s challenge looks at how we can reduce textile waste by reusing and upcycling old clothes and materials.

Flagging Up Climate Action

For this year’s challenge, we are collaborating with Sussex Prairie in Henfield on a textile upcycling project.

The project will involve schools and community groups from the region creating individual flags from upcycled materials to be made into bunting. The flags will include a climate action message or pledge that can be stitched, written or printed and will then be sewn together into a huge piece of bunting to be displayed in the Sussex Prairie Gardens.

The flags are a simple way to spread a climate action message and is easy to make for anyone using recyclable materials.

How to Enter

What you need:

  • Re-used and re-purposed cotton or natural fabrics e.g. old pillow cases, tea towels etc.
  • Sewing needle, thread, pins and scissors
  • A4 piece of paper or card (to use as a template)

How to make your bunting flag:

  • Cut out 2 pieces of material slightly larger A4.
  • On one piece of material sew, write or embroider your climate message and design. No sequins or plastic buttons please.
  • Grab the other piece of material and place them face to face (so the back side of the fabric is facing outwards) and pin together.
  • Now sew them together about 1cm from the edge on 3 sides leaving the top of the design open.
  • Now turn the material the right way out and you have a lovely bunting flag.
  • The flags can be A4 or A5 size.

For inspiration and more information on making the flags, visit the Sussex Green Hub, Horsham.

Send in your bunting flags

Finished flags can be:

  • Dropped off at Sussex Green Hub, United Reformed Church, Springfield Road, Horsham (last Saturday of the month 10am to 4pm)
  • Dropped off at Henfield Repair Café, Henfield Haven, Hewitts, Henfield, BN5 9RL (3rd Saturday of the month 10am – 12 noon)
  • Posted to Sussex Prairie Garden, Morlands Farm, Wheatsheaf Road (B2116), near Henfield, West Sussex, BN5 9AT or dropped off from 1st June