Offcut Two

‘Offcut Two’ is the second part of an artistic exploration of waste. Fletcher showcased new work inspired by a Thames Estuary landfill site, where layers of once hidden waste are spilling into the river. Fletcher created an all-encompassing experience for viewers, aiming to deliver on both an informative and artistic level.  Shocking and delighting in equal measure, Offcut Two encouraged viewers to make changes within their micro world that will generate a macro impact.

Organic cotton-linen, wool, peace silk, repurposed wool blanket, naturally dyed wool and silk offcuts.
Date of Production
December 2019 - March 2020

The concept of ‘Offcut Two’ was first conceived during a visit to East Tilbury after hearing of the historic landfill site. Packed full of materials such as ceramics, glass and more contemporary plastics and synthetics, the site is a 20th Century time capsule. However, as the effects of coastal erosion take place here, this waste is being unearthed and swept into the Thames.

From today’s climate conscious point of view, we observe the situation in East Tilbury feeling we could have done things differently. The harmful state of East Tilbury’s content (including asbestos and battery leachates) is beyond use for a designer to work with physically so instead, ‘Offcut Two’ aims to further the lifespan of this waste by observing its weathered shapes and colours to inform contemporary designs.

“Through this collection, I want to convey an important message to care for and respect our possessions, while finding beauty and purpose in the discarded fragments of our lives.”

Every piece in the collection is made using a variety of environmentally conscious fabrics which are gathered, draped and structured, mimicking the patterns seen in Tilbury’s landfill waste. This concept has also seen Fletcher using a more subdued colour palette than in past work. 
Earthy tones and washed out reds are scattered with small pops of colour referencing the shredded waste strewn across the landfill. This unique palette has been achieved using food waste and plant dyes applied by hand, with the addition of GOTS certified digital printing.

As with ‘Offcut One’, Fletcher has kept every offcut piece of fabric left from the collection to feed into further work. These take the form of homeware pieces including the rugs and quilts featured in the installation. By allowing people to touch fabrics, try on the clothing and sit on the rugs, Fletcher encourages viewers to appreciate the quality of craft first-hand.

“By valuing the craft of everyday objects in our lives, we will respect, look after, mend and repair them, in turn consuming less.”

A film recorded at the Tilbury landfill acts as a contextual backdrop while a live dance performance transforms the exhibition, forming an immediate connection with viewers.

“Clothing is designed to be worn, moved in and lived in, so what better way to present my work than as a dance performance which truly sets the garments in motion.”
Studio Isabel Fletcher 2022