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"Scrap tyres are a rapidly growing problem on this planet, with over 3 billion tyres dumped globally every year. They take decades to break down and often pile up on landfill sites, taking up valuable space and clogging up our planet. We need to find imaginative and creative eco-solutions for the increasing amount of waste on our planet and transform it into useful and sustainable treasure. From the moment I saw those car tyre sandals, I knew that this had to be my mission in life."
London-based fashion designer Laura Zabo has drawn on not only her own lifestyle choices but also her life experiences to create her remarkable range of handmade fashion accessories. Working with discarded bicycle and car tyres and inner tubes that she saves from a future as landfill, she has developed a visually stunning and environmentally focused selection of belts, jewellery, dog accessories, handbags and even sandals.
Her creations are now seriously in demand, particularly with vegetarians, vegans, cyclists and fashion lovers who appreciate the innovative idea and the unique items. Laura Zabo appeals to those who do not want to betray their principles when it comes to fashion – but who also want durability, comfort and a strong image.
Laura herself says, “The abundance of trash is a tremendous problem for us and our planet, and we need to make more room for ideas that help us get rid of it or transform the excess, instead of producing more and more. I was inspired by seeing items made by the Maasai for sale in the markets in Tanzania. I realized that I could create fashion that was beautiful but also that would use materials that were destined just to be thrown away, take generations to break down and poison the Earth. Now we can not only save, but also celebrate, these tyres and tubes!”
Every tyre and tube has its own story and no two products are identical. Individually collected, retooled and reborn, Laura Zabo’s fashion range is an embodiment of the recycling, low waste movement. Whilst her belts and jewelry may ease the conscience, the look and style is paramount to her – this is not ‘make do and mend’ but rather a couture makeover for something that would otherwise just be binned.
Laura is delighted that upcycled tyres are taking the world by storm and that more and more people are becoming eco-conscious, choosing sustainable, ethical and vegan products. She simply cannot wait to come up with even more wild ideas for her beloved tyres and hopefully inspire others to think big, create, and change the world!