Utne Blogs > Environment

Put a Broken Umbrella to Good Use

 by Julie Hanus


Tags: Environment, green living, upcycling, umbrellas, dogs, small business, landfills, Taryn Zychal, Grid, WorldWatch, Julie Hanus,

paper umbrellasA Philadelphia-based designer is transforming broken umbrellas into cute pooch jackets and women’s hoods, reports Grid. Taryn Zychal, who sells her “Recycling Zychal” goods on Etsy.com, has seen a recent flurry of interest in her small business. Crafty environmentalists should take note: According to a 2007 WorldWatch article, people in the United States buy 33 million new umbrellas every year. Cheap models have all but killed the market for their repairable counterparts (and repair shops), which means every year millions of discarded umbrellas end up in landfills.

Sources: Grid (page 8 of digital magazine), WorldWatch (article not available online)

Image by D Sharon Pruitt, licensed under Creative Commons.