Sold in first 18 months
In 2010 the Australian Bureau of Statistics estimated that half a million tonnes of leather and textiles were sent to landfill, which is nearly all of the textiles generated in Australia over a whole year. One passionate business that’s tackling this waste issue is Seljak Brand, a sister duo who have created closed loop, luxurious blankets out of factory floor offcuts from Australia’s oldest wool mill in Tasmania and a 92-year-old mill in Lithuania. The blankets are made from a minimum of 70% recycled merino or lambswool and a 30% blend of other fibres (mohair, cotton and alpaca) and poly for strength.
The closed loop system allows Seljak to divert waste from landfill – once a blanket has lived a long and cosy life, Seljak arranges for it to be shipped back, ready to be recycled and re-spun into another luxurious blanket. While the blankets are preventing waste from harming our environment, it’s not the only difference they’re making. For every ten blankets sold, Seljak donates one blanket to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Melbourne. With the support of Dreamstarter, Seljak were able to turn their dream of saving the environment and helping asylum seekers into a reality.
In 2017, Seljak ran a successful crowdfunding campaign with ING Dreamstarter, which allowed them to begin the process of researching, prototyping and manufacturing a new summer blanket made out of general textile waste donated from Australian companies. After two years in research and development, Seljak Brand found the solution they needed wasn’t yet feasible within Australia, and turned to Europe. They launched their summertime blanket – Seljak Dune – in August 2019 which is made of textile waste gathered from 16 mills around Europe and woven in Lithuania.
After visiting the mill in Lithuania, Seljak Brand commissioned a 3rd party textiles sustainability specialist to conduct an independent audit of the facility to ensure environmental protection measures and workers rights were both up to the high standards we expect in Australia.
Seljak Brand are committed to finding solutions for turning Australian textile waste into beautiful things in Australia, as well as overseas, and are continuing their innovation journey on home soils too.