Pretty in Plastic: Upcycled Jewelry from Straws and Credit Cards
Kellybeth Designs uses seemingly wasteful plastics — drinking straws and credit cards — and upcycles them into trendy fashion accessories.
In some fashion circles, the phrase “plastic jewelry” has a negative connotation. People generally think of plastic jewelry as “fake” or “cheap,” and with all the plastic waste already swirling around in our oceans, why would you want to purchase another plastic item that will probably break and be added to the pile?
Instead of using new materials to craft decorative accessories, some designers are starting to look at the growing plastic waste problem as a source of inspiration and upcycling creative, attractive pieces from things that others would have overlooked.
Give yourself some credit
Kellybeth Designs is all about using innovation to stop unnecessary waste. That’s why the identical twin sisters behind this brand decided to come up with a creative way to repurpose old plastic gift cards and credit cards into fashion-forward earrings, bracelets and necklaces.
“We want to share our creativity with the world and offer an alternative line of jewelry for the adventurous, fun, trendy and eco-conscious woman,” say the designers on their website. “We’ve created our business so we can spend time with women and make them feel beautiful simply by creating a product that will be a conversation starter and can be worn with confidence.”
Kellybeth jewelry has been featured at fashion shows all over the U.S., as well as in Shoestring Magazine, Vegan Babe and Works by Nicole Williams.
If you’re interested in adding some of these recycled accessories to your jewelry collection, you can follow Kellybeth on Facebook or shop at their online store as well.
Go with the FLOW
It was 1888 when Marvin Stone patented the spiral winding process to manufacture the world’s first paper drinking straws to make beverages more accessible for hospital patients that found it hard to sit up and drink. Fast-forward to the 1930s, when Joseph Friedman came up with the idea for a bent straw after watching small children spill their drinks at a local soda fountain. Neither of these straw pioneers could have anticipated that their inventions would become one of the many types of plastic waste filling up our landfills and polluting our oceans.
Instead of allowing all these bendy straws to go to waste after just one use, designer Linda Schailon decided to come up with a creative method that turns old straws into fashion accessories in a collection of upcycled rings appropriately named “FLOW.”
According to Schailon, the ring band is created by using the elbow of a straw. This gives it flexibility to be adapted to any extent. The rings come in a wide selection of patterns and colors, varying the number of drinking straws and providing an infinite variety of rings that are perfect anytime you want to show your funky and more colorful side.