Valley woman recycling old clothes for new designs

Posted at 6:00 AM, Sep 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-27 09:25:55-04

Angela Johnson is giving those old t-shirts hanging in your closet a whole new life.

"Think about all the t-shirts that are sitting in your closet right now that you can't get rid of but you don't wear them because there's a hole in it or it doesn't fit you anymore," said Johnson.

So Johnson decided to start making ballroom gowns, blazers and skirts out of recycled t-shirts.

The Tempe fashion designer went to fashion school in Los Angeles and moved back to the Valley. Her idea started to catch on and now people are now bringing her those sometimes tattered tees.

"Somebody gets to hold on to memories that maybe otherwise would have been tossed away."

The gown and blazer take about 25 t-shirts but if you don't have enough, Johnson will fill in the blanks. And some of her creations are more than just a t-shirt. Johnson points out the story of a cancer survivor who brought pink t-shirts from fundraisers. Angela says you really can tell a lot from what the customer brings in.

"Where they've been, what kind of music they like, what kind of hobbies they have," said Johnson.

Prices for the custom pieces start at $60 and go up to $400.