Using recycled products is the new fad with Delhiites. With environmental issues becoming a growing concern, funky, colourful and unique products made by recycling scraps and waste is becoming popular in the city.
“Recycling of products helps in two ways. First of all, it creates livelihood for many people. Secondly, it has an ecological value because we are using products that were earlier waste materials,” says Vimlendu Jha, of Swechha, the NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation) that runs the programme — Green the Gap.
There are NGOs and even independent businesses that are recycling waste materials and creating products out of them, which are sold further. We bring to you some of the organisations that are working towards the cause ofsaving the environment through some whacky ways.
The Bamboo Store
Though the store sells eco-friendly products, one of their main attractions is a limited collection of greeting cards made out of waste materials and discarded saris. The paper that is used for making these cards is recycled hand made paper, which has been made using fabric scraps. “We use saris and gaudy scraps of cloth material that is donated to us. We even do rounds of various tailoring shops where we pick up scraps of cloth from them,” says Minhazz Majumdar from the store. These cards are priced at Rs 25 each.
Where: The Bamboo Store, N-11 rear Lane, N Block market, GK 1
This programme, run by the Society For Child Development, makes use of digital waste, dried flowers and cloth scraps to come up with a variety of products such as bags, pencil boxes and building blocks. “We have a flower programme called AVACYAM, where we recycle waste flowers. Everyday, around 500 kilos of flowers are collected, dried, and converted into holi and rangoli colours,” says Madhumita Puri, executive director society for child development. They also start selling holi colours one week before the festival at Dilli Haat, opposite INA market
Where: Prabhat Resource Center, Community Center, adjacent to Roshanara Club Shakti Nagar
Haati Chaap is popular because they make funky products out of paper made using elephant dung.
“ We use elephant dung to make the paper. The collected dung is sent to our units in Jaipur. The dung is cleaned, cooked and washed to make the paper. This is all done to ensure that the paper is not harmful to the user and is free of bacteria. The final products created out of this paper are made at the workshop in Delhi,” says Mahima Mehra, owner, Haathi Chaap. They make more than 80 kinds of products using this kind of paper. Some of these products include board games such as snakes and ladders, toilet paper rolls, photo albums, photo frames, book marks, bags, and stationery items. Their products are also available at People
Tree in Connaught Place and Tatsat in Hauz Khas Village.
Where: Shop No.1, Mansarover Building, 90 Nehru Place
Tel: 011- 41618630
Green The Gap
Junk and trash gets a new lease of life here, as they are turned into unique and colourful decorative and utilitarian items. “They are fair trade eco fashion products that look really fashionable. We use rubber tires, rice sacks, juice tetra packs, Mother Dairy milk packs, amongst other things,” says Vimlendu Jha of Swechha.
Some of the other products that they make are necklaces, bangles, hair clips made of paper mache, broche made of newspapers, Madhubani paintings on tyre tubes, bags, teddy bears made of factory waste cloth, and chai coasters made of tetra packs, as well as other things.
Where: 24/3, Hauz Khas Village, near Naivedyam restaurant
Tel: 011- 26671758
Creative ways to use junk and recycle at home
1) Paint old beer bottles and liquor bottles using acrylic colours. These can be used at flower vases or just as space for decorations.
2) Newspapers and old bed sheets can be recycled by donating them to animal shelters. Newspapers and pretty flowery printed cloth can also be used as gift-wrapping material.
3) Old CDs can be made into funky tea coasters by painting them.
4) Use old newspaper instead of poly bags as bin liners
5) Plastic containers given by restaurants can be used for planting seeds for growing herbs for your vegetable garden.