Shelley Bakker with her recycled products at the Christchurch Go Green Expo last weekend

Upcycling from waste

by Ann van Engelen

Prebbleton resident Shelley Bakker is passionate about art, animals, recycling and sustainability and through her label, ReCycle ReCreate uses materials destined for landfill to create everyday useful products.

“I am a printer by trade but love art or anything mechanical or creative and also collect old rare books and print memorabilia. I started getting into wearable art a few years ago and now create reusable and recycled products for everyone to use,” says Shelley.

“I have information about sustainable practices, items, tips and creative projects on my ReCycle ReCreate Facebook and web pages. My aim is to help remove single-use plastic and help people learn how to reuse as much as possible.”

Shelley runs the Prebbleton Market and is at the Lincoln Market on Saturdays with her aprons, bags, cutlery wraps and wood carriers.

“These are just some of the items made from reusing. I have recycled with my family since I was young because that is what we did back then, you didn’t just throw stuff away, you found a new use for it. I enjoy the challenge of looking at something and deciding what it can be made into instead of buying new. I create with products destined for landfill and sincerely believe we need to think about now, and the generations to come.

“We are all a piece of a puzzle, and if everyone does a small bit in recycling, together we will see a major difference further down the track. We need to use every item for as many uses as we can so that there is no end to a product.”