The Ghost Bag
The project was born during our summer holidays at the seaside, where we got confronted, like many others, to plastic waste on the shoreline.
We looked at the waste as a revenant, first discarded in the depths of the water, but brought back by the waves. It leads to face the traces of our occidental way of living and reveals the absurdity to think that we don’t have to deal with something once it’s out of sight.
It is estimated that discarded fishing gear, also known as ghost nets, amounts to 640,000 tonnes, 10% of the world's marine litter. Every year they are responsible for trapping and killing millions of marine animals and coral reef. The ghost nets are a major symbol of ocean overexploitation, but often invisible to the naked eye. It is from this metaphor of ‘facing the wave’ that we thought of the Ghost Bag.
Made of recycled materials, the bag itself is recyclable. We have developed a new fabric consisting of fishing nets recovered from the sea, trapped in ECONYL* regenerated nylon fabric. Using artisanal techniques, each bag will be unique because of the arbitrary placement of the nets. By considering the afterlife of the bag we wish to reintegrate this object into an evolving cycle, an open loop.
The design process was a question of being conscious, of paying attention to the material of the object, to its organic part. Being constraint to use just one material, it forced us to think off the beaten path to find unexpected design solutions; for instance the solution to close the bag with an inside drawstring bag.
Important to us was that the sourcing of our materials would be within Europe. The fishing nets are provided by a fishermen cooperation in the Netherlands that work together on the clean up of the North Sea, the ECONYL yarns and fabric are made Italy and the bags will be manufactured in Paris. By the traceability of the production line we want to ensure a high-quality product.
The partnership with Polymer Science Park was very enriching, their expertise in the field of plastics made it possible to research the recyclability of the developed material, which was a very important step for us. Besides their valuable knowledge, it was great to feel support from the science field in our research to develop the Ghost Bag.
Our aim in the near future is to take the Ghost Bag in production and sell it through our webshop, online platforms, and a selection of retailers.
It is primordial to collaborate together in the field of design and science to push boundaries and change perspectives.