Outdoor brand Arc’teryx recently introduced its first design ambassador to the public.
She is 27-year-old Nicole McLaughlin, graphic designer and climber with a story that deserves to be delved into a bit.
Before trying her hand at design, Nicole studied language dysfunction and intended to pursue a degree in the subject. She continued with her studies but an internship in a public relations agency made her realize that what really interested her was creativity. She then begins a collaboration with Reebok but it’s not enough. In 2018, what was just a hobby turns into a job.
Focused on exploring around upcycling and sustainable fashion with a tongue-in-cheek approach to the creative process, Nicole began turning old volleyballs into slippers; camera bags into bralettes and Haribo candy packets into shorts.
This unpredictable transformation of materials allows her to uniquely highlight one of the most important – and at the same time most complex – messages of the fashion world, sustainability.
Nicole totally disrupts the perception of waste and sustainable design.
The creative New Yorker, who will hold workshops on upcycled design, commented on her new adventure with Arc’teryx: “as a climber and designer, I’m excited to partner with Arc’teryx. I’m looking forward to shared learnings and connecting our communities so that together we can amplify the value of circularity, including repurposing garments to keep waste out of landfills”.
The first of these workshops will be there in the fall and will give participants a chance to create something with their own “waste”.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Nicole to the Arc’teryx team”, said Jurgen Watts, Brand Experience Director at Arc’teryx, “we look forward to helping her share her passion for upcycling as we grow and evolve our initiatives in circularity and increasingly offer our guests more sustainable choice.”
To begin her collaboration with the Canadian brand, Nicole created two design works with used Arc’teryx item parts and other recycled materials: the Arc Cart and the Mini Tent.
The first is a four-wheeled cart built from two used Bora 62 backpacks and a used cabin cruiser found on eBay while the second is a miniature waterproof tent made from Arc’teryx GORE-TEX fabric scraps, strike-off patch logos and a used mini display tent purchased online.
We can’t wait to see Nicole’s new work with Arc’teryx as she continues to focus on sustainability.