High-end fashion brand Balenciaga is launching a jewellery range made from plastic waste
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Spotted: It is not only Etsy shops and independent designers who have turned to repurposing waste as fashion items. Conceptual material designer Shahar Livne has recently collaborated with high-end fashion brand Balenciaga, on a line of jewellery made from recycled ocean plastic.
The jewellery range includes three different bangles, one ring and two pairs of hooped earrings. The accessories were all designed as part of Balenciaga’s Afterworld: Age of Tomorrow collection, which was launched via a video game and features avatars dressed in oversized, tailored suits made from t-shirt jersey materials that have been made to look worn and creased.
The Balenciaga accessories team first adapted the shapes of vintage jewellery pieces from their archives, then handed the templates over to Livne, who remolded them in plastic to give them a “fossilised” texture. This was achieved by using a mixture of calcium carbonate waste from the marble industry and ocean plastic recovered by Oceanworks, a global marketplace for recycled plastic materials.
The materials and design were inspired by Livne’s Metamorphism project – a conceptual work on the future of plastics and the geological record of the Earth, which imagines a time when plastic has become a semi-natural material. The composite material for the jewellery was 3D-printed, before being remoulded by hand. Livne explained that, “The plastic composite becomes natural-looking and becomes precious as a futuristic semi-natural and scarce material.”
Livne’s range for Balenciaga is just the latest to incorporate sustainable or recycled materials. We have previously highlighted a designer who developed a biodegradable sequin made from cellulose and high-end eyewear that is 3D printed using a resin made from castor beans.
Written By: Lisa Magloff