There’s a garbage revolution going on, and it’s materializing in my New Jersey county.
TerraCycle is founded on the conviction that all garbage can be re-purposed or “recycled,” even if in a non-traditional way. The company’s small staff, headed by former Princeton University student Tom Szaky, has fashioned candy wrappers into purses, Purina dog bags into and circuit boards into clocks. Their products are more than a environmentalist’s hippie-dippy side project, though; TerraCycle goods are available in major national retailers including Walmart and Target.
The company’s headquarters are in Trenton, New Jersey, and in addition to selling their products in places like Whole Foods and Home Depot, they have a TerraCycle store in Princeton’s Palmer Square. Eco-capitalist Tom Szaky and his staff also star in National Geographic Channel’s entertaining reality show “Garbage Moguls.” The show documents the staff’s unconventional challenges, such as figuring out how to turn cookie wrappers into kites (see the clip below). It also captures their workday antics and driving desire to do things differently.
I stopped in the Palmer Square store yesterday and snapped some photos of the space and their products, as seen in the photo slideshow below. To learn more about TerraCycle — like their national collection programs and how local schools make money from the company — and to see their products, visit the official site or catch the “Garbage Moguls” show. You’ll have a hard time looking at a wrapper or plastic bag the same way.
–Karina for TKGO
“The idea of fashion and how we interpret it is based on culture.”
That is how the Northwestern University host professor, Steven Fischer, opened the intimate, 20-person lecture with Chinese fashion designer Liu Canming last night. Liu stopped by the Kellogg School of Management to talk with a group of undergrads and grads (through a translator) about the literal world of fashion.
Fischer had organized a set of discussion prompts for the attendees and Liu, most of which centered upon the concept of culture — namely Chinese culture — and fashion. Although Liu is Chinese and lives and works in China, his designs are devoid of what many would envision as traditional Chinese or Oriental motifs. In fact, the first thing I thought upon opening his Fall/Winter 2009 lookbook was: Blair Waldorf. Seriously! Simple yet elegant designs on a muted palette with plaid, ruffles, detailed embroidery and high waists filled the pages. It was like we were back in New York City again. (See for yourself in our slideshow below.)
And that’s just it. Liu believes in a “fashion world,” rather than European fashion versus Chinese fashion or American. He supports designers who borrow from other cultures’ style traditions; in fact, he said he traveled to Africa as inspiration for his current line. And to further make his point, he used my embroidered, Mexican-inspired Tracy Feith for Target frock as an example. “See, those flowers are very Chinese, too, because the stitching is very detailed and the flowers look very realistic,” he said. Who knew!
Let’s just say we felt pretty cool after that one.
-Karina for TKGO