Have you ever seen a bag that stylishly claims ‘I am not a virgin’ to indicate that it is made of recycled material? Introducing Texool, a Mumbai-based company that upcycles discarded textiles into stylish handbags and shopping bags.
The increasing amount of cast-off clothing from the U.S. and other wealthy countries shipped to India and Africa at throwaway prices gave the founder of Texool, Jaideep Sajdeh, the opportunity to build a business that could create low-skilled job opportunities, help save the environment, and generate a profit as well.
Sajdeh’s family were already in the business of turning discarded clothing from western countries into recycled yarn; with Texool, he was able to create an entirely new source of demand for used textiles by making shopping bags out of them.
A team of sixty employees cut up used, discarded clothes, and transform them into designer school bags, backpacks, shopping bags, wine bags etc. Old sheets are cut into standard sizes, stamped with designs and sewn into all kinds of bags. Texool’s bags are ‘greener’ than the trendy ‘green bags’ offered at grocery stores because not only are they plastic free and reusable, they are actually made of old sheets and table cloths.
With Disney, Mattel, Colgate, Steve Madden and many big retailers in India already picking up his bags, Sajdeh hopes to increase production from their current 15 lakh bags a year to 50 – Texool is truly a literal rags-to-riches story come true.
Featured image source: Wall Street Journal
Written by Anisha Kashwani