In an interesting twist on merch, the global oatmilk drink company Oatly is launching a collection of limited-edition, artist-created vintage denim jackets, saying that "pre-loved is just as good as new, and way better for the planet".
Oatly has partnered with 10 artists to upcycle, rescue and reimagine old denim jackets in a pilot programme that's being deemed as a "world-first", as the merchandise gives renewed life to items already in circulation. But it does make sense, as the company is on a mission to encourage us to "eat better and live healthier lives without recklessly taxing the planet's resources," as Oatly puts it. Through ReRuns, the brand asks the simple question, "Why have we been selling new clothing; is there a more environmentally friendly way to let people show their support for the plant-based revolution?"
Taking a creative and community-driven approach, Oatly tapped a group of rising female artists to put their own oat-loving, plant-forward spin on the collection of vintage denim jackets. Names include Stephanie Santana, Lindsey Made This, Jessica Warby, Nicole Chui, Ellen Jong, Emma Hall, Danica Pantic, Mary Kate McDevitt, Cymone Wilder, and Ann Chen.
Launching with limited availability in North America, the collection will be available online through Oatly.com. All proceeds will benefit The Lower Eastside Girls Club (LESGC), a non-profit that offers free, innovative programming and mentoring to young girls in New York City.
"Our awesome crew of Oatly evangelists have always been front and centre, helping us spread the gospel that plant-based is better for the planet, and we've heard from them loud and clear that they want our merch," says Heidi Hackemer from Oatley. "However, it wouldn't be Oatly if we didn't find ways to constantly improve and strive to make everything we do and put out into this world, environmentally thoughtful. Through this experiment, we're able to provide a handful of artists we love a platform to bring their talents to our Post Milk Generation fanbase, while also supporting a remarkable organization and lowering the impact of our merch. We think it's a win-win-win. But if we're proven otherwise, well, at least we tried."
The fresh collection dropped on Monday and will be available until this Friday, with the denim jackets available on a first-come, first-serve for $250. In December, Oatly will drop its second limited-edition release: a series of one-off, Oatly-inspired, vintage holiday sweaters, designed by a new set of hand-picked artists, so watch this space.
For fans looking for more options to represent the "Post Milk Generation", there are also upcycled t-shirts supplied by and in partnership with Goodfair, emblazoned with one of five of Oatly's power statements. T-shirts will be sold at cost, for $18-24.