Tag Archives: recycling

Another Day in the life of Recycling Zychal- Inventory Photoshoot in Hyperspeed

In the second installment of Day in the life of Recycling Zychal, upcycling obsessed designer Taryn Zychal gives you an insider view of the creative process at work. Using a large 7.5′ PVC pole covered in $1 IKEA carpets- a handmade super sized cat scratch post of sorts that she made for her cat Rhoda- some tape and a chair, Taryn mounted her Flip Camera to the top to give an all inclusive aerial view of the inventory photoshoot process.

Recycling Zychal's inventory photoshoot of new broken umbrellas to go on sale next week!

We will be color correcting and putting up the umbrellas that you see in this video over the weekend on our store site, www.recyclingzychal.etsy.com so be sure to check them out! This is one of our greatest batches to date!

Again you will see all 3 pugs in this video and if you watch closely, you will also see an appearance by Rhoda herself.

Set to the music of Digitalism, this video should surely get your creative juices flowing.


One of a kind Upcycled Umbrella Handbag Contest Extended!

On a recent trip to the fabric market, I was struck with some amazing new ideas and inspiration for the Upcycled Umbrella Handbag idea I’ve been throwing around and I’ve decided to extend the contest until April 1st! and no this is no April Fools Joke!

To enter to win, leave a comment under our post telling us what you think, why you would like to own this custom made eco friendly handbag or any suggestions for the bag itself- a color a shape, ANYTHING! Be sure to vote in poll and thats it, you could be the next winner!

Don’t delay, go enter to win an eco friendly, custom, handmade upcycled handbag from your friends at Recycling Zychal!

Help us get upcycled couture on the runway at the Sewing and Stitchery Expo!

Vote for our Upcycled Umbrella Dog Rain Coat to be modeled on the runway at the 2010 Sewing and Stitchery Expo!

Recycling Zychal has been chosen as a finalist in the BurdaStyle Coats and Clark Red+Pink Fashion Show! Both our upcycled umbrella HOOD and dog coat have been selected for voting and we would absolutely love to have a dog model the coat on the runway in Washington for the Sewing and Stitchery Expo!

It only takes a second to vote and any vote will help!

Vote for the HOOD here

Vote for the Upcycled Umbrella Dog Coat here

(I believe you can vote for both, so please do!)

It only takes a minute to help get our upcycled fashion on the runway!

Let’s put the fashion spotlight on upcycling this year by getting one of our products on the runway!

Recycling Zychal in GRID Magazine available online!

If you live outside of the Philadelphia area and cannot get a hard copy of February’s issue of GRID, you can now view the whole issue online on http://www.gridphilly.com

The feature on Recycling Zychal is on page 8 and there are some other great articles in this month’s magazine, including a review on the different vegetarian takes on bahn mi, or the Vietnamese “hoagie” as most know it. Although I am a vegan, I was drooling over these and am definitely going to attempt to veganize it (maybe a future post?).

New year, big news!

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Claire Connelly, a writer at Philadelphia’s very own sustainable culture publication, GRID. I’ve been fairly obsessed with GRID ever since I saw the first issue at the Good Karma Cafe, which is right around the corner from my house. She and I wound up getting coffee and talking about Scranton (I grew up there, she attended school there and is a former member of The Swims, a popular NEPA band) and of course, Recycling Zychal. I am so super excited to announce that I will be featured in the Profiles section of February’s GRID Magazine! I would love it for each and everyone of you to make it to the launch party next Monday if you are in the Philadelphia area. Drink and app specials and of course your monthly dose of Philadelphia-Green-Goodness, so come on out, grab some brews and do some trash talking with me 😉

GRID Magazine's 11th Issue, featuring me! 😀

GRID Magazines February Launch Party

Monday 1/18/10  5-8pm

The Abbaye 3rd and Fairmount, Philadelphia

$3 drafts and 1/2 off appetizers

Broken Umbrella Photo Caption Contest on Better Off Soaked

Win a custom made, eco-friendly, cruelty-free Upcycled Umbrella HOOD from Recycling Zychal!

(from Sexy Upcycling)




Philadelphia’s broken umbrella elite, Recycling Zychal and Better Off Soaked, have joined forces to put together an amazing photo caption contest and the prize is a Sexy Upcycled Umbrella HOOD! The HOOD is the epitome of Sexy Upcycling, and takes landfill bound broken umbrellas and gives them a stylish new life as a modern day babushka! The rules for the contest are simple, just visit the Better Off Soaked Blog and write a caption for one or all of the broken umbrella photos for the contest. Create and leave your captions from now until Midnight, Sunday, November 29th and then you, the readers and caption makers, will determine the winner by voting for the favorite caption on Monday and Tuesday! Get your friends and family involved, it could make an interesting Thanksgiving dinner conversation (imagine your father grumbling about those crazy broken umbrella collecting hippies). The winner gets a fully customized Upcycled Umbrella HOOD from Recycling Zychal! Thank you to all that participate and good luck! Oh and a big big big thank you to the folks at Stylestance who helped make this contest and partnership possible by featuring both Recycling Zychal and Better Off Soaked on their daily style blog!

Saving the planet should not make you a victim of fashion!

Remember the old saying “Turn Trash into Treasure”? I do, in fact, I design by the “Triple T” as I call it. As a dumpster diver and founder of Recycling Zychal, I am constantly researching and coming up with ideas so that I can take something that would spend the rest of it’s life in the landfill and transform it into a quality product that can be used for years to come, like my Upcycled Umbrella products. On the other hand, I am also a product designer and with that comes the need to satisfy both functional needs and style needs. Form Follows Function, the “Triple F”, the other thing I design by.

Upcycling, function and style; I feel like Recycling Zychal is the only company out there producing items that are combining these three things.

To me, these ideas are what guide the new product development process. Some of our upcoming products include Upcycled Umbrella Dog Beds, Baby Bibs and Kitchen Aprons. The water-resistant nylon makes them all easy to clean, have been designed after extensive research on current and future trends and are made from broken umbrellas, of course.

While browsing InHabitat’s fairly new eco style-based blog, Ecouterre, I came across this article, 6 Clever Ways to Upcycle Orphaned Accessories into New Treasures. I hate to say it but some items are better left un-upcycled.

The main photo definitely grabbed my attention, but there’s no disguising the fact that that model has gloves on her head. They mention something about this look copying off of Dolce and Gabana. Are they really comparing this to runway design?

glove head

High fashion? nope, just a glove head

And then there’s a “solution” for a lost earring.. Shoe Earring! Of course, why didn’t I think of that? Oh that’s right because it looks like an earring on a shoe. No function, no style, no brainer. I’d take that earring and send it to the Cash for Gold people and hope I get a check for enough money to buy a new piece of jewelry at the Buffalo Exchange before I’d hot glue a stray glove to my hairband.

No style, no function, no brainer.

When trash looks like trash, why would someone want to wear it? Upcycling is a beautiful idea, and it should be a beautiful sight. I have so much respect for any company wiling to take the dive and start producing upcycled products, but I have been horrified by some of the fashion crimes I have witnessed in the world of upcycling; whether its just not worth upcycling, like my friends the Shoe Earring and Glove Head, or if its something made from overly branded packaging that is sewn together and instead of making you feel like a sassy eco-diva, you  feel more like a walking advertisement.

Ad Bag

Advertisement or Eco Couture?

I just want to make a promise to all my wonderful customers and readers and let you guys know that I will never make anything that looks like trash, regardless of where it came from or what it once was. I want to focus on the future of the materials, everything deserves a second chance AND a makeover. Most people are usually stunned by the fact that Recycling Zychal’s product line is based around the upcycling of broken umbrellas and I want to keep it that way. When form follows function, trash doesn’t have to look trashy.
What do you guys think?