Green America: Growing the Green Economy for People and the Planet
Vintage Creations hand-dyed
ruffle sweater with cashmere

Vintage Creations
Seattle, WA

Vintage Creations was founded by Beth Nielsen, a former business executive, mom, and avid recycler with a passion for vintage textiles. Amazed by how many textile items are sent to landfills that were barely used, with plenty of yardage and usable areas left, Beth started collecting them to utilize in a creative outlet. Disenchanted with corporate America and a desire to spend more time with her young family, Beth left the corporate world in 1998 to start Vintage Creations, a clothing company that uses entirely recycled materials.

Our most popular products are our "recycled cashmere" items that are created entirely from 100-percent vintage cashmere sweaters. We purchase and rescue cashmere sweaters with a hole, or stain, but many reusable parts. We launder, hand-dye, and cut in our Seattle studio using the old sweaters as fabric to create new clothing and accessory items.  We are able to salvage several thousand sweaters each year, saving them from landfills.

All pieces are handcut and hand-dyed in our Seattle studio. Items are then sewn by a local family-owned home sewer who is paid a fair piece-rate for all items.  While most apparel companies manufacture overseas to keep costs down we create entirely in Seattle to keep our footprint low and supoort our community.  Our buttons are all vintage/recycled, our labels are printed on organic cotton, and our hang-tags are printed on recycled paper. Wholesale catalogs are all digital as opposed to printed paper.

We practice sustainability and community support  in every aspect of our business.  Our retail space, which is in Seattle's Pike Place Market, employs local students and artists. Our online shop is designed and maintained  by a local female-owned business.  We donate our time and energy by regularly mentoring and offering internships to local fashion design students. Irregulars and seconds are donated to Seattle's homeless to keep them warm.

Since we are opposed to using "big banks," we operate entirely without credit, so the prize money would be used to continue and expand our recycling efforts, while being true to our mission of recycling, employing local youth, and being community supporters.

Trade show booth.

Bale Pike Youth
Bale of used sweaters.

Our retail space at Pike Place Market.

Local youth cutting cashmere in our studio.