ietStof vzw is a local Antwerp sewing atelier that focuses on working with existing materials and bringing used fabrics back into circulation. By selling these upgraded products, we also do upcycling.
We are also a social project, where young people can develop their talents and gain self-confidence while learning to sew and design. We want to make sustainable investments in people, and increase their self-care and self-esteem by focusing on talents and social competences. They can help build our operation and learn entrepreneurship.
Furthermore, we work self-sufficiently and want to invest cost-consciously.
With the help of Flanders Circular, we scaled up ietStof to a large textile workshop. We organised training courses, which were put on hold by Covid for a while. We did receive large orders from shops, for which we upcycled stock to put back on the market.
Because of Covid, we had to take several actions to generate income. Wish-Bags are a good example of this. From all our little leftovers of fabric, we have sold wish ribbons with bags to make people dream again in these times. And wishes are a source of hope.
At the same time, we also started our project for artists. ietStof managed the overstock handbags of the label I AM. Since 2019, we experimented by letting young people paint these bags. Because of Covid, this experiment grew to 40 artists. It has become a beautiful collection, of which 60% of the sales will go to the artist themselves. #IAMARTIST
We are getting a lot of positive reactions to our project. That gives us the courage to continue and to keep believing in our case. We do realise that it will not be easy to sustain the project in the current financial situation.