LOOK: This T-Shirt Waste Loom Costs P10,000


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A post shared by Vogue Runway (@voguerunway)

Elise McMahon, the designer of LikeMindedObjects, made waves on social media when she was featured on Vogue for her t-shirt waste loom.

Simply put, the t-shirt waste loom creates products like jackets, chairs, cushions, and weighted blankets using discarded novelty t-shirts. The project was done in collaboration with Francesca Capone Jones.

Here’s how it was described on LikeMindedObjects’ website:

“With millions of novelty t-shirts being discarded each year, we have developed this loom to encourage DIY home recycling and the creation of heirloom objects that will be shared and saved long into the future, keeping this useful material out of landfills.”

Through the project, McMahon said that they have “consumed over 600 discarded shirts already in our first year of this exploration and we will continue to grow that number.”


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A post shared by Elise McMahon (@likemindedobjects)

The loom comes with a how-to manual and a QR code link to a video class, which means buyers will have to make their own products.

The cost? $200 (roughly P10,269).

Filipinos were quick to react on the Instagram pages of both Vogue Runway and LikeMindedObjects, and said that it looked closely like the basahan (mats) being sold here.

McMahon released a statement on Instagram Stories, acknowledging the similarities.

She said, “I appreciate you bringing this to my attention. Through these comments last night and today I learned about this amazing weaving style, basahan, using t-shirt material that has long been happening in the Philippines and have been rushing to educate myself since. I really respect this practice, and all people who are being resourceful [with] craft and waste globally.”

McMahon adds, “This project we just announced, [with] the loom and teaching book/video, is intended to motivate and share info about global fast fashion waste with the American public as we have a huge habitual waste problem.”

In a Story, she said, “I can see how the aesthetic crossover, which results from using random t-shirts, feels super close to the basahan style and partly caused this upset.”

McMahon also mentioned that she is open and hoping to have a full dialogue about the matter, saying, “I’m aware of my privileges and all the potential for resulting blind spots… I wish I had known about this before and am glad to know about it now.”

The page also linked to Rags2Riches, a Philippine-based social enterprise that works with artisans to create garments using deadstock fabric.


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A post shared by R2R | Rags2Riches (@rags2richesinc)

Rags2Riches’ Instagram page also released a statement.

Reese Fernandez-Ruiz, one of the co-founders, said, “I understand the frustration. There are many reasons to feel frustrated. We need more supportive systems, access to bigger platforms and markets, recognition for artisans and their crafts, appreciation of our culture, and the list goes on. But the path to get there could be one that is open, kind, and intentionally inclusive. We’ve got a lot of work to do, so might as well do it together.”

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