IKEA Recycling Collection: From Workwear to Home Decor

Written by Camilla Jessen

Feb.15 - 2024 1:07 PM CET

Ikea has taken a creative step towards sustainability by repurposing employees' old uniforms into new products.

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In an innovative approach to recycling, Ikea has transformed the old work uniforms of its employees into a fresh collection of interior design items.

Between 2020 and 2022, Ikea updated the work attire for its staff, leaving behind a significant quantity of unused garments from across Europe.

These have been repurposed as secondary raw materials, leading to the creation of various home decor products.

The recycled fibers from these uniforms are combined with other materials, such as recycled polyester from PET bottles and textile waste from production, to meet specific color and quality standards.

The result is the Växelbruk collection, featuring textile products like curtains, throws, and bags.

A Step Towards Sustainable Innovation

This initiative is part of a pilot project by Ikea to explore the potential for giving used textiles a second life and to enhance the company's recycling processes.

"We had to learn to navigate quite a complex landscape in terms of requirements, legislation, and logistics. The project brought a lot of cross-disciplinary learnings, not only about textiles. We’re sharing these insights across IKEA to use in everything from the supply chain to product development and design”, explained Luca Clerici, Deployment Leader at Ikea.