Textile artist and designer Kathleen Tesnakis created ekologic in 1996 as an exploration in reuse. The creativity that recycling requires has provided years of inspiration. Every item she makes must be hand cut and combined like a collage as her raw material is multifarious in nature. Kathleen’s sustainable philosophy is deeply rooted in the ekologic studio where every bit of scrap waste is identified and resorted to develop future products. All of these actions take time but it is this very intention that resonates throughout the `e ko logic designs. You may have seen Kathleen’s work on the cover of Organic Style magazine, read about her in Daily Candy or seen her ‘fingerless mittens’ in Time magazine, to mention a few. This year, look for Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth, rockin’ out in an `e ko logic recycled cashmere sweater, aptly named ‘Lee’. Currently, Kathleen operates ekologic with the help of her husband Charlie, bulldog Jasper and the studio team.
All products are handmade by recycling post-consumer used cashmere sweaters into one-of-a-kind clothing and accessories. In the 22 years since ekologic, Inc. was founded, over 16 tons of used clothing has been rescued and transformed. Kathleen chooses to use natural fibers because they allow your body to breathe and will eventually breakdown when landfilled. All ekologic products are made in their hometown of Troy, NY. This allows Kathleen to provide like-minded individuals with jobs they can put their hearts into. The garments used to create their raw material are discards from the NYC region. Reusing clothes as a raw material has many benefits; it decreases dependence on the water and chemicals required to make new materials, reduces the amount of used clothing being landfilled (85% of all used clothing is landfilled) and transforms a discarded product into something beautiful and functional that has the quality to last a second lifetime.