Guest blog Sonja Kainonen

Hi there! My name is Sonja and I am a master’s student at University of Strathclyde, studying Environmental Entrepreneurship. I come from Finland, but have had a privilege to call Scotland my home for the past 4 years. After working for 3 and a half years in hospitality and marketing I decided I wanted to learn more, and as a passionate yet learning environmentalist, I decided to pursue studies where I could combine environment and innovation. This route brought me to the beautiful island of Orkney and to Mixter Maxter, where together with Kirsteen we have been innovating ideas that would make her colour bursting business more circular!

My first trip to Orkney in January 2019. Windy, a bit chilly, but oh so beautiful.

Circular economy is the future, but currently the world is working as a linear economy: raw materials are extracted, goods are produced, sold, used and disposed resulting loss of natural resources and build-up in waste. Does not sound too good, does it?

Often when we discard something there is still value in them. For example, beyond repair, ripped jumper might not work as a clothing anymore, but the material can be recovered and new goods can be made without needing to extract it from the nature. In circular economy resources are kept in the loop by reusing, remanufacturing and repairing them, minimising waste. In nature’s own cycle there is no waste: everything decades, returns to the Earth and grows new life, and so the loop keeps going on. Now it is time to replicate that circle. Not everything can necessarily be made degradable, but we can start by not throwing things away when we no longer need them.

Wool is an amazing renewable material with many good qualities that makes it a sustainable option for the crispy Scottish climate, and climates alike. There are no nasty microplastics released to the oceans from woollen clothing and the garments are naturally durable, lasting for many years when given the care they need. It would be a shame to discard such valuable material only for a sake of a small tear, for example. Clothes are fixable, and worth fixing for. If, however, your old and worn off woollen garment no longer serves you and is beyond saving, you can always return it. Returning your old Mixter Maxter clothes mean they can get a whole new purpose pack in the studio. Whether it will be growing new vegetation like Coco is researching, or end up becoming a small piece of a new garment, anything that keeps it away from landfill will be one step closer to becoming more circular.

As part of our creative collaboration with Kirsteen, there will be more coming up about how you can fix your favourite clothes, so don’t forget to follow Mixter Maxter in Social Media to stay up to date what’s going on in their colourful woollen world.

A sneak peek for the colourful creative process.

Link for “nasty micro plastics”

Link for “Coco is researching”

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