The Story

This is Rehaused: a collaborative collection by Dirtbags and Berghaus.

Since Berghaus’ first products were created above LD Mountain Centre in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1966 the company has grown and developed into a major, reputable brand. They have kept their Northern roots and British spirit . For many decades Berghaus has repaired its products free of charge, extending their lifetime but they wanted to look into a reuse option as well. This is where we step in.

We like to think there are similarites to the beginning of Berghaus as a brand and Dirtbags. Both headed by the meeting of creative and engineering minds – ready to stop ‘working for the man’ and to do something radical in the outdoor industry. Outdoor recreation has become highly accessible and affordable within the last decade. A large volume of plastic based waste is produced in the form of non-recyclable plastics, such as from tents, garments and ropes. We address these types of waste by providing individuals, and outdoor companies with an responsible and sustainable outlet for their waste.

Berghaus repair your items to extend a products lifespan. But what happens after? Berghaus reached out to us to explore the possibility of extending the life of their products BEYOND USE. This meant repurposing the heck out of them.

In order to prevent them from reaching landfill and damaging our environment, we intend to reuse and repurpose as much as we can to reuse their textile waste and lessen their environmental impact .

Why not recycle? Reusing keeps the main components of the fabric and parts whereas ‘recycling’ by definition means to break down chemically and reprocess. Reuse is a low carbon solution to keep plastic based textiles in the economic system without need for incineration, or chemically altering in the way that recycling does. So it is better for the environment, and by choosing us – a stone’s throw from HQ in Sunderland – it is keeping the air miles down as well.

Returns, samples and the unrepairable have made their way to our workshop in the Lake District to find a new home, as a completely new product.

Look carefully at each product and you may recognise signs of a past life. A waterproof zip, a jacket lining, a hood toggle, a cuff velcro fastening.

The Process

We cleared a sewing table off, put the kettle on, emptied the huge box of goodies to be remade – and got cracking. You lucky lot get to have the result.

  1. Each item is washed, carefully unpicked and cut back into pieces.
  2. Toggles, zips, elastic and velcro are put to the side for later.
  3. Our templates are placed over the fabric and arranged to get the most out of each single bit.
  4. Scraps are put aside to restitch into panels for the zip pouches.
  5. We stitch into new products, using plastic parts like toggles and elastic as well. Each product has been designed carefully so we made the most of what each garment had to offer.

Simple but effective concept.

For example:

One waterproof jacket and one fleece zip top = six or seven fleece lined chalk bags

One pair of waterproof trousers and some sample fabric and offcuts from the chalk bag production = eight lined waterproof small kit bags

The Products

What fantastic colours and fabrics given a new lease of life. We are excited to bring our first ever co branded collection to our customers. Each piece is made individually and unique.

Introducing a specially co-designed signature product with Leo Houlding, a lightweight chalk bag, spacious and without faff: the Uberlight.


Chalk Bags