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Global Designer Spotlight: Accra

Trashy Beauty

Trashy Beauty



Fashionably reducing their carbon foot-print, this company shows trash can be treasured.

By: Francesca Andoh

Accra, Ghana


Trashy Bags is a genius organization that creates fashion out of recycled plastic waste. From the heart of Accra, Ghana, Trashy Bags realizes the harm that plastic waste poses on the environment and tackles the waste management problem by bringing to life fashion accessories crafted out of waste materials such as water and ice cream sachets and polythene bags. With such a peculiar twist in fashion, the business is also gradually expanding its product line to include the use of local fabric.


Trashy Office

Trashy Office


Their most recent addition to their growing collection is the Smart Bag, a bag that can be switched up and used in two different ways. Started in 2007, by Stuart Gold, Trashy Bags has become a strong presence on the city’s waste management front as well as setting new standards in fashion.


I had the opportunity of visiting their showroom and interviewing Elvis, the projects director, and I got to appreciate first-hand what they really mean when they say they’re “fantastic in plastic”. They are truly authentic and get all my props for their promotion of eco-friendly fashion.


The studio making creations out of..well, trash!

The studio making creations out of..well, trash!


With lines including Trashy Leisure (various sports/travel/daily hand and shoulder bags), Trashy Office (laptop cases), Trashy Shopping (shopping bags), Trashy School (lunchboxes), Trashy Beauty (vanity cases), they have covered the gamut of what one needs when they are on the go. And making it eco-friendly is a plus in my books!


Various materials are used, including discarded chocolate wrappers, yogurt sachets and water bottles, a standard gym, the Trashy Sports Bag, uses up to 267 waste plastic sachets!


Raw water packets ready for sewing.

Raw water packets ready for sewing


Here are a few of the things he had to say during the interview and some photos of the products in their showroom:


How did Trashy Bags get started?

It began as a social enterprise to sensitize people about the need to keep their environments clean and the dangers that an open disposal of plastic waste poses on the environment. [Also] to create jobs for people.


How do you recycle the plastic waste?

We have people who gather them from the public and bring them to us at a small fee. Our workers go to work on them cleaning them, putting them together and stitching them into various items.


What are the some of the feedback you get from your customers?

People readily buy our products for two main reasons;

They appreciate the products for what they are and they think of the products as environmentally friendly. So buying them is just their way of showing their support for the promotion of that environmental friendliness.

For more information, please visit  www.trashybags.org .



Photography by Francesca Andoh

*Francesca is an art loving, styling obsessed, fashion lover who roams the streets of Ghana always looking for the next fashionable inspiration. Check out her thoughts at www.francescaandoh.blogspot.ca

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