Recycle Your Style

By Lindsey Galloway

Whatever your style, you can find artfully created totes, handbags, and clutches made from materials others once considered trash.

Tire Inner Tubes: Anyone who’s had a bicycle flat knows all too well that tubes have a limited life span. But the rubber they’re made from lives on in landfills for centuries. Now you can get new mileage out of recycled rubber inner tubes with a sleek black purse from English Retreads, ($65 to $209; www.thegreenloop.com) or Passchal ($135 to $285; www.passchal.com). 

Food Wrappers: Most of us would think twice about throwing away a little candy wrapper if we realized that discarded packaging creates more than 80 million pounds of garbage each year in the US alone. Fortunately, some companies are putting that waste to exciting new uses. Check out bags made of repurposed soda labels, candy wrappers, rice bags, or juice boxes at Ecoist, ($28 to $188; www.ecoist.com), Bazura ($15 to $54; www.bazurabags.com), or Nahui Ollin ($39 to $245; www.nahuiollin.com).

Sails: Sailors may have an easier time disposing of the fabric that makes up a boat’s sail, thanks to a few creative designers who have refashioned spankers and spinnakers into sturdy bags. Even landlubbers can shiver their timbers with a tote from Sea Bags, ($29 to $185; www.seabags.com) or Red Flag Design’s AUM Totes ($198;www.branchhome.com).