Creating a Sustainable Impact With The Launch Of An Online Marketplace For Recycled and Upcycled Clothing

Embarking on a transformative journey, the Re-Suit project in Lebanon, in collaboration with local NGO arcenciel, is making significant steps in reshaping the landscape of sustainable fashion. Launched in 2022, this initiative is focused on a circular economy approach. The main objectives are reducing the social impact of the economic crisis for buying new clothes and hiring marginalised micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to improve their income while minimising the negative impact on the environment with recycling and upcycling unwanted textiles.

Expanding Reach and Ensuring Privacy

By launching two new websites, the initiative aims to empower more small businesses, creating jobs and contributing to environmental sustainability. The online presence provides MSMEs with access to a broader market. Simultaneously, it offers customers a discreet and personalised shopping experience, emphasising the privacy of their sustainable choices.

Dual Brands: Style on Repeat and Inventi Studio

Arcenciel created two distinct brands: "Style on Repeat" and "Inventi Studio". Launched in January 2024, Style on Repeat is tailored to cater to mid-range consumers, presenting high-quality used clothes at affordable prices. This  bolsters the initiative's sustainability by ensuring a self-sustaining cycle through sales.

With the launch expected in 2024, "Inventi Studio" embodies the upcycling ethos of the project, crafting innovative products such as bags, home accessories, and clothing from unwanted textiles. This unique brand carries a higher price point, reflecting the complex processing involved in transforming materials into distinct and innovative items. This brand signifies a strategic diversification to meet diverse markets while upholding the principles of recycling and sustainability.

Baguette Bag: Created by utilizing various fabrics from different old clothes.
Bucket Hat: Constructed from denim.

Initially, arcenciel used to sell the products for an affordable price in a physical store “La boutique” with four branches all over Lebanon. The integration of these online platforms widen the market and aligns seamlessly with Re-Suit's core objectives, fostering a multi-faceted approach to sustainable impact.

SME Empowerment and Job Creation

As the Re-Suit initiative expands, so does the potential for SMEs to flourish, leading to more green jobs. As the demand for Re-Suit products rises, the empowerment of the two clothing brands becomes a catalyst for job creation and income generation for small businesses. This positive cycle not only strengthens the economic fabric but also contributes to the expansion of the SME network by hiring more SMEs to produce and sell upcycled textiles online, thus actively reshaping the economic landscape.

Internship Opportunities for Students

Collaborations with universities and institutions will present valuable opportunities for students to engage in internships with "Inventi Studio," furthering their understanding of sustainable practices and giving them more exposure and experience to start their careers.

Improved Access to Affordable Clothing

"Style on Repeat" acts as a social commerce platform, enabling consumers to purchase products directly via social media. Leveraging technology for a streamlined purchasing process, this platform makes sustainable and affordable clothing more accessible, particularly for men and women affected by socioeconomic challenges.

In conclusion, this strategic integration of online platforms not only reflects the dynamic evolution of Re-Suit but also underscores its commitment to pioneering sustainable practices on a national level. As the project continues to grow, the digital frontier presents an exciting avenue for further innovation, collaboration, and positive change.

The Re-Suit initiative is part of the Tafawoq project, which is financed by the Leopold Bachmann Foundation, among other donors. The project is part of the Swisscontact Development Programme, which is co-financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Federal Department of Foreign Affairs FDFA.

Initial vocational education and training
The project enables 150 young women and men from three population groups to take part in a coaching cycle that teaches them basic skills to integrate into the labour market in the project areas of Tripoli and Beddawi in northern Lebanon.In Lebanon in 2018, 950 000 Syrian refugees were registered with the UNHCR, while approximately 250 000...