Today, shall I
a) tile the bathroom
b) weed those beds
c) none of the above and continue to put Netflix’s staff’s kids through college…
Well, one of us is trying desperately to motivate herself to do something good for the planet!
London-based Manxie, Anna Cottle, mainly works in events, but because of the coronavirus – all events are off. So, she has decided to use this time to try and reduce the unnecessary waste of one of our natural resources by developing a little side-hustle – One Man’s Trash.
“It all started when I was sent down to one of the leather houses in East London’s Whitechapel,” said Anna. “I was there to collect some material for London Fashion Week, and while waiting, I spotted a massive pile of really fancy offcuts.”
Animal’s skin grows irregularly you see; natural leather obviously does not come in an ideal geometric shape. Waste of genuine leather is pretty high, despite all attempts to divide it neatly. When asked about the leathers’ destiny, the man in the shop informed Anna that the ‘massive pile of really fancy offcuts’ was his bin.
She knew there and then that she had to find a purpose for all these left-overs. “As a fan of big jewellery, I began immediately to make a plan, and subsequently walked out with most of the bin’s content,” she said. Since then six years ago, making big brash, but light, statement earrings – from material that was on its way to landfill – has been Anna’s main hobby. “We celebrated our 6th birthday on the 29th March”, she explained. “Great excuse for some free giveaways and extra creativity!”.
Because she’s often in really corporate environments, it gave her a nice balance once home. Recently, she has had more time to concentrate on it and it’s gone big. “Ok, we have to stay at home,” said Anna, “but people still want to send little cheer-up presents to friends, or treat themselves for when Summer comes. And it will come…”
Anna’s factory comprises off one employee and a kitchen table. Her creations are light, only made from scrap, and no two pairs are the same – none of those same-outfit awkwardnesses…
“Life has changed almost unrecognisably in the last few months,” said Anna, “and many peeps have said they are shopping from One Man’s Trash just to do something good for the planet. People are commissioning me if they see a shape they’d like in a different colour, and I’m happy to oblige! I release a range each week, and the creativity seems to be really lifting spirits, which feels really important at the moment.”
In this time it’s also super important to support the little guys. The big businesses will survive this but imagine afterwards a world with only high street chain stores; every town/city with the same stuff. So dull!