Replacing single-use plastic bags with a tote that you can use multiple times is a good way to help cut waste from your shopping routine. It is, however, important to note that producing cotton bags is actually quite resource-intensive, meaning that you may have to reuse them tens of times before you can offset their environmental impact.
In an effort to provide a more sustainable alternative, designers Johanna Hehemeyer-Cürten and Lobke Beckfeld came up with Sonnet155 — a reusable and biodegradable tote bag made out of textile scraps and food waste.
To create the eco-friendly bags, the two designers used a composite made of two waste materials that can be sourced locally. The first one is derived from cellulose, the structural cell wall found in plants, and the second one is pectin, a polysaccharide derived from the skin of fruits. Put together, the two materials form a gelatin-like tissue that can break down into water or soil at the end of the tote bag’s life.
Each bag adheres to minimalism and features an appealing design with a unique gradient pattern derived from natural pigments. The bags have a leather-like feel and almost all of them look like they’re made of jelly candy, with colors varying from phthalo blue and green to lemon yellow.
Image source: JOHANNA HEHEMEYER-CÜRTEN