Take the initiative and do something good for the planet by wearing dresses made of recyclable products. These styles often contain materials designated for the landfill, such as household waste products and reclaimed rubber tires. Whether you wear recycled designer fashions or make the dress yourself, choose eco-chic dress silhouettes that resemble everyday wardrobe picks. Even if you use old wrappers as your recyclable material, an eco-friendly dress is a definite conversation starter.
Repurpose, Recycle, Renew
Strapless and halter dresses with long, flared skirts are just a few dress styles made of re-purposed old clothing. These wearable dress styles -- often resembling evening and couture-like ball gowns -- are generally made of old garments -- trench coats, denim jackets, T-shirts and sweatshirts. Prints and patterns taken from 1970s-inspired maxi dresses as well as striped wool and patterned silk scarves are masterfully stitched together creating dresses that are redefining the fashion scene.
Plastic Meets Dress
The next time you go to toss a plastic water bottle, you could be throwing away a dress. Although green-initiative designers use textiles made of recycled polyester and cotton yarns, other unusual materials enter the mix. Textile mills produce polyethylene terephthalate fabrics -- PET -- made from clear plastic drinking bottles. After the bottles are compressed, processed and melted into pellets, mills spin the material into viscose fibrous yarn. Once woven into knits, the fabric has sufficient drape with a soft hand to make stylish dresses.
Center Stage Recyclables
Eco-conscious designers are revolutionizing the runway as dresses made from recyclable materials take center stage. Flattened and folded newspapers folded and put together create jaw-dropping evening dresses with fitted bodices and full sweep skirts. Other materials include laundry bags, box tops, labels and plastic bags to create long eco-conscious dresses. Take the recycling trend one step further and make a statement at prom. Designers are also including wrappers, bottle tops and cardboard packaging to create dresses for that special night.
Here Comes the Bride
Since the showstopper dress is generally reserved as the designer's signature piece, this slot often showcases the wedding dress. Eco-designers incorporate alternative materials ranging from old wedding dresses to discarded sandwich wrappers to create these recyclable gowns. Whether made of fabric, paper or rubber gloves, the dress often features different shades of white with a pop of color, depending on the product. Although these alternative materials are reinventing traditional wedding attire, if you plan to don this type of dress on your special day, make sure it's designed for wearing and not just an art piece.
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- GGO Clothing: We Turn Recycled Plastic Bottles into High Fashion
- Polartec: Eco-Engineering Recycled
- Brit + Co.: 15 Inventive Dresses Made from Recycled Materials
- One Wed: Wedding Dress Sculpture Made From 1400 Rubber Dishwashing Gloves Turned Inside-Out
- Photo Credit Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images