Elvis & Kresse: Transforming Used Fire-hoses Into a Range of Luxury AccessoriesFrancescaPalange
For over the last 13 years Elvis & Kresse have saved all of London’s fire-hoses, transforming them into a range of luxury accessories and donating 50% of the profits to The Fire Fighters Charity. From the first day they had a unique DNA: rescue, transform, donate.
In 2005 Elvis & Kresse had a chance meeting with the London Fire Brigade and had a very emotional response to their damaged, decommissioned fire-hose. Kresse saw it as too heroic and too beautiful for landfill. She learned that over 10 tonnes of fire-hose was being sent to landfill in the UK every year. Somebody had to do something, and those somebodies were Kresse Wesling MBE and James (Elvis) Henrit.
They mounted a rescue. Following their first meeting with the London Fire Brigade they promised to rescue the hoses and donate half of any proceeds to fire service personnel. Over the last 13 years Elvis & Kresse have saved over 200 tonnes of material from landfill and have now donated over £100,000 to The Fire Fighters Charity. In fact, they were awarded Supporter of the Year (non-beneficiary) at the 2018 Spirit of Fire Awards for their tireless work and yearly donations.
Based in restored Grade II-listed mill in Kent, UK their highly skilled craftsmen handcraft gorgeous wallets, belts, bags, and purses and have extended their range to now include reclaimed Printing Blankets and Burberry leather off-cuts. Now that all the fire-hose is being saved from landfill they knew it was time to take on an even larger challenge. The 800,000 global leather waste issue.
In 2017 they partnered with The Burberry Foundation. A five-year partnership that will see the leather off-cuts from the production of Burberry leather goods transformed into new luxury goods designed and sold by Elvis & Kresse. The aim is to save at least 120 tonnes of luxury leather from going to landfill or incineration. 50% of the profits from the leather rescue project will be donated to renewable energy projects as well.
When all this is taken into consideration, it is easy to see why their pioneering efforts to reduce landfill waste and their philanthropic works were featured on this year’s BBC’s segment called “War on Waste”.
Elvis & Kresse is cool, pioneering, innovative – and bound to continue making a positive difference. Their mantra says it all: “The future of luxury is sustainable, ethical, reclaimed, open, generous and kind.”
The latest issue of the print magazine packed with interviews and features on eco and heritage artists and artisans is available now.
You can talk to No Serial Number Magazine too. Join our Twitter conversation (#noserialnumber) as we talk to eco artisans and designers changing the way we think about our lifestyle choices. You can also share your views and keep up to date with our latest articles by joining the newsletter or following us on Facebook.