SIX CANADIAN UPCYCLING SMALL SHOPS
There’s no denying we live on a planet with a fashion crisis – and it’s not just a bad outfit choice. With the urge to make a switch to sustainable and ethical clothing options, shopping from Canadian upcycling small shops is becoming a popular option.
The clothing and textile industry is one of the largest polluters we have. Not only are we creating most clothing in unethical conditions, we’re producing fabrics that require high amounts of energy and water. The planet is already overflowing with products and doesn’t need new ones being made – even if they’re being made in an ethical, sustainable factory. Upcycling new clothes, furniture, toys or linens is a fantastic option when we’re in the need for something new. It doesn’t require new fabrics being made, it creates a minimal amount of waste and it saves clothing from heading to landfill.
I’ve found some awesome small shops here in Canada who are putting the art of upcycling to good use. Some who give a shirt a makeover, some who turn adult clothing into kids clothing – always a unique outcome.
Here are six Canadian upcycle small shops you can feel good shopping from!
M & J HOBBY CRAFTS
M&J Hobby Crafts (also M&J Upcycled Stuff) is an upcycling small shop based out of Calgary, Alberta.
Their Etsy page is filled with some adorable, unique products that are all made from secondhand clothing. Many of the pieces are patchwork styled tops – aka tops that are made up of patches from various pieces of clothing.
Loungewear for kids alert!
Mabee Baby is a. gender neutral kids clothing shop that creates upcycled loungewear – including adorable bath robes!
Dawn, the creator behind Mabee Baby, starting her shop after struggling to find gender neutral, eco-conscious clothing for her son.
ME & THE WEE
If you’re like me and a fanatic of concert t-shirts, this shop is for you.
Me & the Wee is a handmade kids clothing shop based out of British Columbia. They upcycle band shirts into grow with me pants, grow with me rompers and even some bibs!
If you’ve never heard of grow with me pants before, they’re AWESOME. They’re made with cuffs and waistbands that grow with your child through a long line of sizes, making them a more sustainable option than other types of pants or leggings.
Giving thrifted fabrics a new life in the form of SCRUNCHIES!
Yup, that’s right. Second Circles is a small shop based out of British Columbia that focuses on creating scrunchies and naturally dyed shirts made from thrifted or hand me down clothing.
With COVID bringing in the need for masks Second Circles also currently sells masks with matching scrunchies!
Sweetly Seamed is here for all your crop top dreams!
Based out of Ontario, shop owner Leah brings new life to secondhand tops of all kinds; t-shirts, sweaters, cardigans, hoodies and more.
There are two kinds of crop tops that she makes. Some, like the one I’m wearing in my photo, come with an elastic waistband and others have a tie bottom using fabric from the shirt.
Bonus: each order comes with a matching scrunchie!
Sweetly Seamed doesn’t currently have a website – shop their Instagram feed H E R E.
THE LAKE OF SPRING
PHOTOS FROM ETSY
Have you ever looked at a shirt in your closet or at the thrift store and wished you could have some beautiful embroidered art added to it?
Well – now you can!
Sarah, the maker behind The Lake Of Spring, has a beautiful talent and her work blows me away. Her Etsy shop currently has an option to have a piece you already own embroidered with the Flower Lady design. Pieces she’s embroidered to pop up onto her Etsy page as well.
The art of upcycling comes in many forms. It can be as small as turning the can from your supper into a lantern or as big as turning an old television into an aquarium. Cutting your jeans into shorts, or your t-shirt into a crop top? Upcycling. There’s a whole bunch of projects waiting for you at home – which one do you think you can accomplish?
Be sure to check out some of my other sustainable shopping lists!