Earth Day 2022
"I dream of our vast deserts, of our forests, of all our great wildernesses. We must never forget that it is our duty to protect this environment."
- Nelson Mandela
Sustainability at Mia Mélange
At Mia Mélange, we are passionate about our planet! We are committed to sourcing local, sustainable, high quality materials. And we love to work with suppliers who share our values. In our studio, we try our best to limit waste as much as possible and to reuse packaging where we can.
Reusing Thread Cones
We save all our used cones so that they can be reused instead of ending up in a landfill. Sometimes there is still some thread left on the cones that we return to our supplier. They have a phenomenal project for this:
"ACA Thread’s collaboration with the Western Cape Industrial Symbiosis Programme has resulted in an ongoing spool cleaning project that involves the removal of labels and the cleaning of empty cones and spools to prepare them for reuse. We offer to buy back empty spools from customers, send them to various organisations for handicapped people and pay these organisations for preparing the spools for reuse. In many cases these institutions are also customers of ACA Threads, who include The Association for the Physically Disabled in Port Elizabeth, The Worcester School for the Blind and the Dorothea School for the Handicapped in Stellenbosch. The project has reduced the volume of waste sent to landfills, lowered the company’s energy costs and carbon emissions, saved our customers money and assisted disabled people to find meaningful employment." - ACA Threads
Read more about ACA's social responsibility here.
Reusing Rope Reels
We return our empty cardboard and plastic reels that our rope is supplied on to our suppliers. Our suppliers are able to reuse the reels, keeping the them out of landfills!
Our courier provides us with stick-on 'windows' that we paste on our parcels to keep our waybills safe. The 'windows' have a backing page that peels off to reveal the sticky side. We use these pages to wrap our tassels to keep them safe during transportation. We also reuse as much packaging as we can. We save boxes that we receive our materials and rope in to reuse when sending parcels out.
The Mia Mélange method of manufacturing results in almost zero waste. Our products are made by coiling cotton rope and stitching it in place. We don't have any offcuts. If there are small pieces of rope leftover, we use these to make our earrings.
In the office, we try our best to use as little paper as possible. We keep our documents online. After we've used the pages of our printed orders, we strike through the page and reuse the reverse side.
Mia Mélange believes in sourcing local, sustainable, high quality materials. Most of our products are made from 100% cotton rope. The cotton is grown locally in South Africa by farmers who are members of the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI). The yarns are spun in South African mills. The rope is braided locally in Cape Town.
The Better Cotton Initiative is a non-profit that promotes better standards in cotton farming. Cotton from licensed BCI Farmers is more sustainably produced. The BCI meets the UN's goals to achieve better global water sustainability and sustainable agriculture. The BCI also promotes use of better irrigation practices with farmers, reducing the use of fertilisers, as well as fair work practices.
Cotton is a true renewable source of fibre. "Cotton has been used as a fibre for more than 7000 years! Unlike fossil based fibres, cotton is sustainable, renewable, biodegradable, and carbon neutral and can be used without depleting or damaging the environment, thus making it an excellent choice as an environmentally-friendly fibre throughout its entire product life cycle." - Cotton South Africa.
Mia Mélange believes in empowering women and creating opportunities. We are passionate about our local community and strive to create jobs for previously unemployed women in our area. We aim to teach our talented team members valuable skills, provide them with an ability to earn a decent income, and empower them to be independent and able to support themselves and their families.
"Activism around climate change and global warming has grown tremendously over the years. It has become more apparent that gender equality is vital to accomplish important sustainable goals. This is due to 51.1% of our population being female. To unite as a global nation and combat these big environmental issues we need to utilise women due to their influence in the home and on future generations. Women’s ideas, campaigns, actions, and voices need to be heard to not only spark a movement, but to keep it going for future generations. By empowering and utilizing women in decision making, activist movements and sustainability goals, as a global community, we can make strides towards the conservation of our planet and sustainability goals. We need to educate and empower. The empowerment of these women is vital because behind each strong, empowered woman lies a trail of future successes."