There are second chances for used plastics. Kaaita’s soft felt has a rather surprising origin behind it. Disposable plastic bottles are the raw material which is processed and recycled in what expert call “fluff”, cotton like puffy flocks of microfibre, which is then woven in soft and durable felt.
I’m so grateful to many people, but let’s start with the professors Judita Peterlin and Noel Pearse. Since all three of us are more or less familiar :) with business school education, we know how logical and mathematical intelligences are valued in the academic and then, further, the business world.
But then, somewhere in some part of the world, there is an economist, consciously making illogical decisions.
An economist that defines a target group by the people that she admires most and not by the people that are most likely to buy.
An economist who is using empathy to understand audiences.
An economist who is developing products out of her personal needs.
An economist who is sincerely interested in social and sustainable without questioning how that pays off.
An economist who wants to grow her company only to the point it can still be sincere and personal.
An economist who is not interested in advertising, promoted content or optimum reach.
A self-destroying person? I wouldn’t say.
I have stepped in front of Romina’s camera to prove I’m fine. With no major wounds, happy in my own studio realising the goals I’ve described above. In a quiet place in order not to drive my fellow economists insane. And vice versa. My only personal goal is to empower myself, our tiny group of followers, admirers, customers, neighbors, partners and co-workers.
But, please, don’t get me wrong. I went through all the calculations and numbers at the Faculty of Economics because I wanted to do that. I do use Excel spreadsheets extensively to calculate costs and prices. I even wrote a business plan. I regularly use Trello to define the processes and effectively collaborate with our virtual team. I work with a brand consultant who is pushing me to use my logical skills to my greatest pleasure and pain :). All because I know, there is no personal nor company self-growth without doing that. But at the end of a day, it is so liberating knowing that I have the freedom to ignore or mix and match all that data with my other intelligences.
Imagine a world full of small or middle-sized businesses that doesn’t base their decisions solely on spreadsheets, the needs of its organizational structure or investors’ pockets? The businesses that doesn’t fuel themselves with the passion to outpace the competition? How would the world look then?
Wouldn’t then everything start to move more slowly? We could stop and notice so many things that escape our picture today. Maybe we would even start to notice ourselves and our real needs?
Photos: Romina Ivancic
After reading the paper “Multiple Intelligences of Artistic Creative Social Entrepreneurs: A Case study” by Judita Peterlin & Noel Pearse (Alenka Repic and Kaaita are the case in this case), it become clearer why I decide the way I do and why I shape Kaaita the way I do. My personal values, the characteristics of any creative, artistic and social entrepreneur are leading the way.
The paper is still in the process of developing, but I hope it will be published or presented soon. I guess all creative, artistic and social entrepreneurs out there will feel much better after reading it.
Thinking of you,
In this story behind the products we share the process of preparing the felt that we use for our slippers with you. The process and recycling are something we really care about and would love to share the experience with you.
Firstly, we would like you to meet Igor. He is a wonderful person who plays an important part of both the creating and the recycling process since he cuts the felt into the proper shape and makes sure that no tiny piece of the unused felt is thrown into the trash bin.
Secondly we want to involve some humble bragging, as we are very proud to announce that by the end of this year we'll have collected a ton and a half of unused felt, such as you see in the pictures.
The reason that is so amazing is that we send this waste to Thermo Team GmbH where it is remade into alternative fuel and is used as such in cement factories. Our felt's story does not end in a pile of trash.
But even before that, we still try our best to use as much of the material as we can by making smaller products, which you'll have a chance to admire soon.
And at last we have to mention our loyal costumers who send us their retired slippers to recycle. Your slippers have been taken good care of. Thank you for recycling & saving with us.
If you want to get involved, you can read more on our recycle & save programme.
Thinking of you,