TWO women have launched a clothing and gift business which specialises in ‘up-cycling’.

The South Lakeland pair recycle old clothing and bric-a-brac to turn all their goods into new products with a quirky look.

Their store, Brass Pineapple, has just launched on Kendal’s Blackhall Yard to cater for ethical customers or people searching for a handmade present.

Emma Haddow, 30, of Windermere, and Naomi Turton, 34, of Kendal, named their business after an impulse purchase of a brass pineapple in a charity shop.

“We’ve got dresses made from T-shirts, bowls made from vinyl records, cards made from old story books, bottle top earrings and jam jar pin cushions,” said Mrs Haddow.

“We want to promote re-cycling. Because we make everything from something else we can take a piece of clothing that doesn’t fit right and make it into something unique.

“It disgusts me that so many clothes are thrown away and that we live in such a throwaway society. I’ve always been interested in trying to do things ethically and in avoiding big chain stores that push out masses and masses of products.

“We started our own idea together about a year ago and have worked our way round craft fairs and the folk scene. We’ve got enough stock together now and really felt it was time to open the shop.”

The art graduates, who studied at the University of Cumbria, also hope to take on alterations work at their premises using the skills Ms Turton picked up during her studies in contemporary applied arts.

They have plans to begin charity quilt-making work-shops and other community projects at their base.

Miss Turton first tried out the upcycling concept in Camden, where she had a shop for several years. She said it was popular with people who were fans of ethical gifts.