What: Recover Brands makes apparel and accessories out of recycled and upcycled materials. Their core products are t-shirts, performance wear, hoodies, and polos made from recycled plastic bottles and recycled cotton. They also make backpacks from upcycled biketubes and coozies from upcycled wetsuits. Eight plastic bottles makes one t-shirt.
Who: Bill Johnston is from Statesville, and attended N.C. State. After graduating, Johnston worked for an outdoor adventure company, guiding backpacking and mountaineering trips out west and in Europe. His already strong interest in protecting the environment and environmental education grew. He knew that he wanted to start a sustainable business that would make a difference. He connected with his now business partner, John Riddle, who introduced him to the technology behind making apparel from recycled materials. Riddle is a 25-year textile veteran. They put their interest, experience and passion together, and decided to start Recover in 2010.
What sets them apart: T-shirts are made from 100 percent recycled materials. Recover Brands controls their supply chain from start to finish by sourcing the recycled materials and converting it into the finished garment, Johnston says, and “in addition to making the most eco-friendly and socially responsible products possible, our products are also extremely soft and durable.”
Inspiration: “Our products are definitely inspired by the outdoors and the environment, but we design our products for the everyday person,” he says. They’re trying to provide solutions to the environmental crisis and plastic pollution, “which are problems that affect everyone in the world. We also work with our customers and get feedback on our products, so the designs are constantly evolving.”
Find it locally: recoverbrands.com.
Find more CLT Made goods by searching the Observer website for that title, or on the “CLT Made” Pinterest page.