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Second time around

By Zhou Wenting | Shanghai Star | Updated: 2014-11-06 09:59

Second time around

Rerun: Recycling and fashion go hand in hand for innovative young designers. Lu Ping / Shanghai Star

Recycling is getting a hip makeover, with young environmentalists teaming up with designers to make everything old new again. Zhou Wenting reports.

At the end of the last century, the sound of bells from pedicabs shuttling through communities would alert people that it was time to recycle.

Residents would rush out to the cabs and sell them the plastic bottles, newspapers and clothes that they no longer used.

Now the pedicabs are disappearing, and many city people simply throw away the items they no longer want. Fortunately, new models of recycling are emerging.

Last year, Li Bowen, 23, together with two other college graduates established Rebirth in the Neighborhood, a program to encourage residents to exchange old clothes in return for articles for daily use.

After promoting themselves on WeChat, Rebirth in the Neighborhood, now have more than 16,000 followers and receive more than a dozen orders every day from people saying they have old clothes to give.

"Most people getting in touch with us are women, especially young, educated ones. More of the young generation have begun to realize that environmental protection has an influence on individuals and families and when they begin to start their own families, they’ll make the initiative to do their bit," says Li.

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