As part of our Meet the Maker series, we speak to the people behind the creations in the Big Issue Shop – a platform for buying ethical products which put people and the planet first. This time, we speak to Kresse Wesling CBE, co-founder of Elvis & Kresse.
What can we find on your part of the Big Issue shop?
A whole range of luxury goods made from rescued materials.
How do your products make a positive difference in the world?
We do three things: rescue, transform and donate. We rescue materials that would otherwise go to landfill. Material reuse plays an absolutely crucial role in reducing our carbon footprint and delivering a circular economy.
By transforming these under-loved materials we are challenging everyone who comes in contact with us to rethink the whole concept of ‘waste’. And finally we donate 50% of our profits to charity.
What inspired you to start your company and how did it start?
I fell in love with Duraline hoses the moment I saw them in 2005, piled up on a rooftop at a fire station in Croydon, awaiting an imminent and undignified death in landfill.
Fire-hoses are decommissioned for one of two reasons, they either reach the 25-year end of their health and safety life or they are too damaged to repair. They either miraculously survive 25 years of active service, or they die trying.