altkleidung altkleidersammlung charity clothing


What happens once you drop your old clothes in these donation bins? It is a common misconception that donated clothes are freely distributed in developing countries. They get sold to African distributors, who again sell them to local salesmen. The cheap second hand clothes then flood the African markets and prevent the countries to develop their own textile industries, which leads to local tailors losing their work; a one-sided dependency on the west and a post-colonial power dynamic.

clothing dumbing side fast fashion dandora


Only half of the clothes are in a sellable state, the rest gets dumped without proper waste management, clogging local rivers and polluting the water. Basically we shift the burden of textile waste disposal to countries with the least capacity to deal with it. It is not easy to stop this hand-me-down trade because too many people are dependent on it. But a solution could come from creative innovation and sustainable business models that use upcycling techniques to turn this one sided trade into a circular trade.


artisans craftsmenship kenya Africa employment


Building a bridge between the byproducts of western consumption and the African re-invention of such products is necessary to create sustainable solutions for second hand clothing. Together with local Tailors in rural Kenya we've built a production chain that reinvents the second hand clothing industry and strengthens the African economy. On the second hand markets we collect fabrics (mainly curtains) to upcycle into new clothing items.

circularfashion sustainablefashion made in Africa black-owned


Through this approach we create one of a kind and truly special pieces that embody the spirit of circularity and equality. Selling them to people of all ages, body types and ethnicities. With a strong visual language and outstanding brand identity, EMEKA is creating a culture and a lifestyle around the idea of resourcefulness. Changing our global clothing narrative, while creating a stream of income back to the African communities.

1 comment

  • Jaime Barral

    Hello, I’m an spanish guy working on textile sustainability and looking for solutions to this industry disaster of textile waste in África. My field of knowledge is related with textile end-of-life management and circularity possibilities
    I would like to know more information about how this upcycled products could made their way back to Europe once they are fixed, looking for profitability of organizations as yours.
    ¿Do you have any idea or previous study analyzing the costs of bringing them back? If not, ¿Do you think it is possible?
    If you have any doubt or I could be of any aid for you dont hesitate in contacting me.
    Thank you in advance for your time, I really admire this project.

    Jaime Barral

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