The end-of-life textiles store gives usable textiles a new life

Lounais-Suomen Jätehuolto’s (LSJH) end-of-life textiles store sells household textiles that during sorting, were discovered to be in good resalable condition. Customers can update their wardrobes at bargain prices and they can buy household textiles, and textiles for crafts at an affordable price per kilo. The shop also stocks upcycled products made from recycled materials. 

The shop’s most popular items are retro clothing and second quality fabrics, which are cut into strips and used for rag rugs. Customers also look for “treasure textiles” for example, crouched lace tablecloths and other hand decorated items.

Men’s clothes are in great demand, but are not received by the shop as much as other products. Päivi Lintula, LSJH’s experienced partner who runs the end-of-life textile shop, believes this is because men often wear their clothes to the end. 

The seasoned textile expert is in her dream job

The shop’s selection depends on what consumers bring to the collection points. This makes work in the end-of-life textile shop versatile, and each day is different. Unpacking the textile loads is a fascinating and varied job.

‘It is kind of like opening Christmas presents when you do not know what is in them. We find wonderful treasures and then show them off to the customers’, Lintula said.

Päivi Lintula, a seasoned textile expert, heads the end-of-life textile store and says she is in her dream job

Päivi Lintula previously headed TST-Texvex’s operations, which began her partnership with LSJH. TST-Texvex, LSJH’s sorting partner, started sorting households’ end-of-life textiles in 2016. Lintula was also involved in the Telaketju YM project, which developed the collection and sorting of end-of-life textiles.  

‘When Texvex’s operations ended in 2019, I felt that this could not be the end. I wanted to continue working with end-of-life textiles’, said Lintula. 

Soon, LSJH invited Lintula to head its end-of-life textiles store. 

‘I said yes, immediately. This was what I had wanted to do the whole time. This is a dream job for someone who likes flea markets’, said Lintula. 

Materials inspire recycled Sixsak products 

In addition to working in the store, Lintula makes her own recycled products, which are sold in the end-of-life textiles store under the Sixsak brand. All Sixsak products are made by upcycling recycled materials, including zippers. The Sixsak brand name refers to the zigzag stitches used to sew the fabric pieces together. 

‘I use a lot of fabric patches in my products. Sewing them together is a lot of work. It is not quite as simple as using just one fabric’, said Lintula. 

Lintula has made coats using fabric patches. She carefully considers their harmonious colours and patterns. Lintula does not use patterns for her products, but she fits the fabrics on a dummy. The fabrics them selves inspire the products. 

‘I never have a prepared idea of what I am going to do next. When I find a suitable fabric in a textile bag, I decide to use it for something. The fabric and the material speak to me’, said Lintula.

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End-of-life textile shop website