Success Stories

Green the Gap – The coolest way to recycle

Green the Gap is a novel upcycling concept initiated by Swechha a leading youth organisation based in Delhi.

Started in the year 2000 by Vimlendu Jha the Founder and Executive Director of Swechha, this is a Delhi based youth-run NGO that is actively involved in several environmental and social development issues as well.

“We strive to inspire action using awareness, communication, training and advocacy as primary tools. We have three cross-cutting focus areas which run throughout our varied programmes i.e. environment and education, civil society and active citizenship,” says Vimlendu.

How did it all begin?

Green the Gap was set in the year 2008 as a means of raising awareness regarding environmental issues and providing secure employment with reasonable wages for the disadvantaged groups.

Through reusing waste in innovative ways to create high-quality useful products, Green the Gap empowers you to make choices about your shopping habits. You are encouraged to be active citizens who spread an environmental and social message through your purchasing choices.

“We aim to make people think about the issue of waste disposal and in turn hope to change attitudes. A portion of Green the Gap profits is used to further develop Swechha’s active citizenship programmes as well,” adds Vimlendu.


The idea came about when Vimlendu and his team worked extensively with the waste and on landfills.

After one of their productions ‘Disposable’, the idea to do something with waste conceptualised into Green the Gap where they wanted to green the gap between mankind and waste.

Being an environmental and a youth-conscious organisation Swechha launched a highly successful upcycling initiative called Green the Gap in 2008.

This is recycling with a creative twist that offers absolutely stunning well crafted and designed accessories, clothing, stationary for home and office, home décor – the works and all beautifully recreated from recycled waste.

Challenges faced

Before you form an opinion that the products on sale from Green the Gap are expensive, think twice. It’s not mass produced and machine made unlike most products available in malls and supermarkets.

In fact, Green the Gap has a workshop in Malviya Nagar in South Delhi where full-time tailors work relentlessly glamming up tetra packs, waste fabric, leather, old tyres and other recyclable products.

This is a crucial means of livelihood for these tailors as most of them are from disadvantaged backgrounds and are in a need for employment.

Vimlendu further adds, “A lot of times people find our products expensive. They feel it should be cheap as it is out of waste, but they do not see the detailing and hard work of these tailors. Swechha has been working a lot with waste and on of the trips to a landfill, there was an urge for me to do something with the waste that we generate in tonnes every single day and that’s how Green the Gap was born”, adds Vimlendu.

What makes Green the Gap unique?

The designs and the quality of the work created by the tailors at Green the Gap make it all the more unique.

The USP lies in how certain waste items can be reused to find a place in your home or office.

For instance, you have wallets made from tetra packs, waste cloth from factories and tyre tubes. You will also pick up funky and cool college bags from recycled cloth, jute, flex tyre tubes, coasters from tetra pack and rubber and stationary from recycled jute. Where would you get such variety all under one roof?

In fact, since a lot of designers do their internship with Green the Gap that also helps them in contributing to their wide range of products as well!

Green the Gap does not procure ready made products. All the products that you see in Green the Gap are being manufactured at a production unit at a Malviya Nagar workshop very close to the Swechha office.

Quality control

“We have a process for the quality check at the production unit of Green the Gap once the product is out of production. One of the senior tailors check all the products they are further scrutinised by the production manager and then finally sent to different stores for sale,” explains Vimlendu.

Journey so far

“The journey for Green the Gap has been mind boggling. From where we started and to where we are and to where we want to go. One can’t stop planning and dreaming for the future and so can’t we. After the launch of our flagship store last year in Hauz Khas Village, we wanted to open stores in different cities. So we launched a store in Bandra, Mumbai,” smiles Vimlendu.


Vimlendu feels that when someone buys a Green the Gap product they are knowingly or unknowingly contributing to their ideas. To name some big institutions, they have NSD, British Council, American Embassy, Cox and Kings and Crisil as their corporate clients.

He further adds, “Anyone and everyone who like what we do is our client. We do not target a specific audience as we would want our products to reach out to as many people as we can.”

Marketing of products

You can buy Green the Gap products from stores in Delhi ( Hauz Khas Village) and Mumbai ( Pali Naka- Bandra west). 

They also sell through other stores such as Tatsat, Rio Grande, Buzzaria in Delhi, Either or in Pune, Levitate in Bangalore, Tribal Route and Tappu ki Dukaan in Mumbai and Maal gadi in Surat.

You can also purchase their products online through Shoppo, Fashion and You and 99 labels.

Now you will be able to buy their products online from or email them at and they will send your product to you.

If you’re a designer then you can contact Green the Gap for internships, and if you want to volunteer or intern with them then send your CV to today!

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Tanya is a graduate in Sociology from Sophia College, Mumbai, a post-graduate in Communications and Media from SNDT Women’s University in Mumbai and holds a Master's Degree in Journalis & Mass Communications from Chandigarh University. A former writing mentor and a seasoned lifestyle writer, Tanya writes columns on The Lifestyle Portal of life and living.

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