Project Repat – new life for old t-shirts
I discovered Project Repat when I attended a TEDx in my new community of Somerville, MA last month. They grabbed my attention with their unique concept to deal with the plethora of unwanted t-shirts clogging closets and wardrobes in the west. By the time I sat down for coffee with co-founder/CEO Ross Lohr and president Nathan Rothstein at local hipster joint BLOC11, the company mission and passion were the same, but the business model was different. Project Repat has a purpose for those excess cotton t-shirts (that might otherwise end up in landfills or developing countries) that involves community, upcycling and fair wages for U.S. manufacturing.
Nathan explained how, with Project Repat, t-shirts are a mechanism to connect communities. Groups and communities can do a t-shirt drive to collect unused or unwanted tee’s. Project Repat then sends them to their factory in North Carolina, where they are made in reusable shoppers. These bags can then be redistributed back to the community or sold as branded merchandise for fundraising efforts. Unused t-shirts taking on a new life, with a new purpose- magnifeco! Imagine buying a localized Repat shopper at your local Whole Foods; unique with logos and memories of community-specific events from days gone by. This model works for schools, business, road races; anytime there has been a large printing of t-shirts that might not still be in use.
The model is scalable and consumers can collect favourite tee’s, from their own closet for their own customized shopper.Project Repat will send you the envelope, you mail them the shirts, and a few weeks later have your own shopper (currently only available in the U.S.) Bags are made from four excess t-shirts in Morganton, North Carolina at Opportunity Threads by someone making a fair and living wage. It’s not only one of a kind, but reversible (with a t-shirt pocket on the inside!), double layered, and incredibly sturdy (tested with watermelons and bowling balls). Regular price $29.98 USD plus Project Repat is offering readers a $5.00 discount – code ‘magnifeco’.