The up-cycler turning Glasgow’s old umbrellas into tote bags

Brolly woman
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A West End woman has found a new use for Glasgow’s broken and unwanted umbrellas.

Laurence Estanove has set up a business – Mice & Meys – turning the fabric into tote bags.

The entrepreneur was inspired to make her ‘brollibags’ after seeing so many casualties on the streets and in the city’s litter bins.

Laurence was inspired to make her ‘brollibags’ after seeing so many broken umbrellas.

Laurence is calling for people to donate their broken brollies.

She is also offering to transform unwanted umbrellas into functional new bags.

Laurence told Glasgow West End Today: “Discarded brollies are sadly quite a common sight on the street.

“By repurposing them, I’m hoping to do my bit towards reducing waste and making us all more conscious of our habits as consumers.

“Broken brollies deserve a second life.”

‘Unwanted’

Laurence says her business in its very early stages and she is on the lookout for unwanted umbrellas.

The idea of repurposing umbrellas came when she moved houses about two years ago.

She said: “I realised I’d been keeping a number of broken brollies, because they had barely lasted or because I liked the pattern so much. 

“I just cut up the fabric then, thinking it might come in handy in one sewing project or other. 

“Tote bags are everywhere – we always need one, don’t we? 

Umbrella woman
“Broken brollies deserve a second life.”

“So when I moved to Glasgow I thought it could be nice to make tote bags that would be a little more original than your usual ones, and a little more showerproof.

“And so the ‘brollibag’ was born.

Laurence says making her bags takes a “bit of time, but it isn’t too difficult”.

She is looking to repurposing the metal frames too – and collaborating with a fellow up-cycler would be fantastic.

‘Discarded brollies are sadly quite a common sight on the street.

‘By repurposing them, I’m hoping to do my bit towards reducing waste and making us all more conscious of our habits as consumers.

‘Broken brollies deserve a second life’

Laurence Estanove

The bags are available to buy via her Etsy shop only (see below), but she is hoping to find a local stockist at some point. 

Laurence said: “I’m always on the lookout for broken umbrellas, and always excited when someone gets in touch to give me one. 

“I also love taking custom orders from people who don’t want to part with their beloved brollies – it all makes it so meaningful.”

“I’m always on the lookout for broken umbrellas.” Photo credit: Ali Hutcheson.

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