Upcycling : What Was Old Is New Again

Jocelin & Marlaine

12. Responsible Consumption and Production

Overview

Jocelin et Marlaine is a french creative workshop and online shop based in Toulouse (31, France), specialized in upcycling used materials and fabrics to transform them into furnishing items.

Authors

Juline Potier

Juline Potier

Emma Desevedavy

Emma Desevedavy

Manon Botti

Manon Botti

School

Toulouse Business School

Toulouse Business School

Professor

LOPEZ DELPHINE

LOPEZ DELPHINE

Innovation

When we asked Elise Royneau Le Touzé to describe the concept of Jocelin et Marlaine she said : “My Baseline is upcycling chic for the home, which means that I collect and hunt for old materials - canvas, sheets, military blankets - from attics, flea markets, Emmaus homes (French charity shop), wherever I can, from old materials, that are organic materials, which I transform and try to update, and which I bring back to today's tastes. I dye, I make my own colours and I make all kinds of pieces like cushions, aprons, plaids, everything that can be furniture, armchairs, tablecloths, sheets…”

Upcycling : What Was Old Is New Again

Inspiration

She first started working in marketing for an upholstery fabrics publisher. Then for the love of fabrics and manual work she took vocational training and became an upholster herself, for 12 years.

Recycling has been on her mind for many years, but it’s only when she set up in Toulouse that she started to make upcycling the center of her business. “It seems to me that we have reached an aberration of over-manufacturing, of waste. […] We always make more and more for not much more results, whereas we have wonderful things in front of us that have been around for a long, long time and that's how I came up with the Jocelin et Marlaine frame. I've always liked to hunt, I know home textiles, unpretentious, perfectly well. I've always been in this field. I wanted to use my two experiences, marketing and upholstery.”

Overall impact

Jocelin et Marlaine business tends to have a positive impact on the 3 aspects of sustainable development. First, it has a low environmental impact as upcycling means creating new product with old ones saving natural resources and raw materials. Second, it has a positive social impact, collecting materials and selling their products mainly in the local area of Toulouse.

Business benefit

When we asked her if she thinks that we can conciliate economic success and sustainability, her feelings were mixed : “Jocelin et Marlaine was created only 5 years ago so that is difficult to judge its economic success. Of course I know that it is more difficult to work in upcycling and that it is not the best way to earn a lot of money. […] It's difficult to get people to think that a product, because it's recycled, isn't cheaper, because it's made in France isn't cheaper... We're faced with this problem. On the contrary, because it is recycled and because it is made in France, it is more expensive, but it is also more valuable. […] It seems to me that mentalities are changing and that people are more and more conscious about environmental and social issues. 5 years ago, they didn’t have the slightest idea of what « upcycling » meant. Now people ask themselves questions about consumption and health. If they are more interested in ecology, they will change their consumption patterns and it will be more profitable for our shops. We have to hold on. […] For my generation it's quite complicated, for yours (people in their twenties) it's changing and there are still a lot of people who accept to pay more to have a better quality and to have a product that's respectful.”

Social and environmental benefit

On an environmental aspect, Jocelin et Marlaine has a very positive impact because manufacturing is carried out in her Toulouse workshop with used materials coming from waste and garbage collected in the area. And when it’s not coming from used materials they use raw materials with low impact. “We use flax, which is a very ecological material, especially old flax, it is a material that requires very little fertilizer and grows very easily. It's a magical material, when it's made in France, because if you bring it from 40,000 km away, it loses its interest a bit. I use a lot of hemp too, hemp is another magical material, the same kind of material that is made in France. Anyway, the old hemp was made in France, mainly in Normandy.”

In terms of awareness towards ecology in our society, she reminded us that we need to take into account that there are different situations in different regions and countries. The rhythm is very different from one country to another. Hence, their impact and their ability to change it is different too. “People are afraid. They begin to change their consumption habits because they want to have better health. I don’t believe in a collective awareness, I believe in an individual awareness. Collective awareness will come later.”

Interview

Elise Royneau Le Touzé, Business owner

Photo of interviewee

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Jocelin & Marlaine

Jocelin & Marlaine

Toulouse, 31, FR

Business Website: https://jocelinetmarlaine.com

Year Founded: 2015

Number of Employees: 2 to 10

Jocelin et Marlaine is a french creative workshop and online shop based in Toulouse (31, France), specialized in upcycling used materials and fabrics to transform them into furnishing items.

The creator, Elise Royneau Le Touzé is collecting old materials - canvas, sheets, military blankets - from attics, flea markets, charity shops and transforming them into new furnishing items for the home.