Seljak Brand was founded by sisters Karina and Samantha Seljak. It was a love of Australian resources that drew Karina home from her work in local food production in Brooklyn, New York. Trained in fashion design, she’d become acutely aware of the waste in the manufacturing world. Sam had worked at Indigenous creative agency Gilimbaa for several years and had started multiple community-driven initiatives in Brisbane. She was ready to crystallise her learnings from purpose-driven business into her own social enterprise.
Inspired by the resourceful and mutually beneficial business practices we saw sprouting up all around us, we poured our time into understanding the circular economy and closed loop models.
Our respect for Australian wool lead us to the oldest weaving mill in Australia, which retains all of its production offcuts for future use. Using these offcuts to make blankets, we incorporated a closed loop system that re-manufactures the blankets at the end of their useable life.
After working with Australia’s oldest wool mill for a few years, we started running out of waste – which is a good problem to have! But we wanted to divert even more textiles waste from landfill, so we looked overseas. Discovering a mill in Lithuania that collected its own factory floor waste, and processed the waste of other mills, we took our first step into globalising our supply chain.
Today, we work with mills in Australia, Lithuania and Italy to make our recycled wool blankets. This enables us to work locally as much as possible, and tap into the scale that mills in Europe offer.
Sam is based at Seljak Brand’s showroom and studio in Brisbane and Karina on the Sunshine Coast.
Photo: Mica Schettini