Students transform trash to clothing

Tables loaded with sewing machines, outfits inspired by coral reefs and containers full of free tea were just a few of the sights at Patagonia’s Worn Wear tour.

Patagonia teamed up with the Outing Club to host the event in the Davis Center Atrium March 23.

The tour, which stops at universities around the country, celebrates the stories we wear, according to Patagonia’s website.

Among the features of the event was a “trashion show” displaying student-made recycled clothes, a thrift shop hosted by the Vermont Student Environmental Program and a number of student-run stations focused on sustainability efforts.

The UVM Eco-Reps was one of the groups to run these stations, with a display focused on recycling. The UVM Eco-Reps website states that the group is dedicated to promoting sustainable practices through student leadership.

Their station included a presentation on plastic bottles and a trivia wheel on recycling facts, sophomore Eco-Rep Connor Herbruck said.

Also featured at the station was an exhibit on microfibers made out of recycled plastic. These microfibers are often used in Patagonia clothing, and can be harmful when they enter the water supply, Herbruck said.

Patagonia is working on technology that will prevent these microfibers from getting into the water, he said.

Other exhibits were centered on repair efforts, such as UVM Bikes offering to fix students’ bikes, according to their Facebook page.

Sophomore Tim Smith, Outing Club vice president emphasized the collaborative nature of the event.

“It was a huge combined effort,” Smith said, stating that the work of other organizations such as UVM Recycling and the art department was essential for the event.

“Anyone at UVM who helps reuse stuff was there,” he said.

The tour included a Worn Wear repair station sponsored by Patagonia. The station repaired any article of clothing that needed mending, Patagonia Burlington representative Cody Mears said.
The message of the station was to reuse, Mears said.

“If it’s broke,” he said, “fix it.”