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The thread of the future

The hoodie made of recycled yarn

The thread of the future

DES.A.FIO: The hoodie made of recycled yarn

Photo: Martin Bernetti

Every second, a full truck of clothes ends up in landfillsBut what does that have to do with you?

Photo: Martin Bernetti

It doesn’t matter how you give an old t-shirt or underwear away – it will probably end up in a landfill. When donating to churches & NGOs, sometimes clothes are too damaged to be worn, or even the organization doesn’t have the necessary logistics to distribute them to those in need – and they end up getting incineration or going to landfills. For example, the Atacama desert in Chile is the destination of 39,000 tons of clothes every year.

It’s time to change how we discard old clothing, not as waste but as a resource.

Malwee launches a hoodie made of recycled clothing

But how do we engage consumers to donate old clothes and raise awareness about the environmental impact of textile waste?

The hoodie that can't be bought.

DES.A.FIO engages a larger audience by promoting exchange instead of purchase

17th May 2022
International Recycling Day

Av. Paulista, São Paulo – Brazil

In the heart of the largest and most populated city of South America, a 3-meter pile of clothes installation was drawing attention to the problem. A strategic digital media plan and outdoors placed in the train stations and surrounding avenues, calling out people to bring five pieces of old clothes and exchange them for a new hoodie made of recycled post-consumption textile.

Anyone in Brazil could participate – by signing up on the website and sending their donations per mail service for free or by bringing 5 old clothes to the event and exchange for a new recycled hoodie.

On the event day, performers were circulating in the area, wearing exquisite masks made of textile waste, now turned into activist art, stating: “The garbage should never be the destiny of your clothes.”
“Where do you discard old clothes?” or “Recycle here. Bring five old pieces of clothes and get the hoodie of the future.”

Mallwee’s most successful awareness campaign in 54 years of the brands history

donated garments
in less than
24 hours

the event

1.3 ton
of donated
clothes +
a partnership
w/ Red Cross

in less than
8 hours

article across
29 media

213 Million
page views
on combined

43 Million
unique visitors

77.4 Million
People reached
on Facebook,
Instagram, TikTok
and Pinterest

And last, but not least:

Although this wasn’t a sales campaign, Malwee reached significantly peaks of sales during the campaign. Woohoo!

People are talking about us

30+ vehicles publications

This project was only possible because of these people



Creative Direction:

Karen Hofstetter


Elke Mendonça


Lalai Persson

Executive Producer:

Ale Sarilho

Impact Consultancy:
Marina Colerato (Modefica)
Nana Lima (Think Eva)
Luciana Nogueira (Think Eva)

Event Production:
Lets Produções

Production Director:
Leticia Frungillo

Julia Cury

Production Assistant:
Nayara Grundi

Set Design:
Ellen Baraldi, Paula Baraldi

Mask Artist:

Carol Almeida

Mask Artist’ Assistant:
Vanessa Almeida

Audio Production:

Produced by:
Dessa Ferrreira

Executive Production:
Tatiana Nascimento

Project Managament:
Marcela Lima

Sound Mixing:

Daniele Dantas

Bruna Guerin

Motion Production:

Motion Director:

Daniel Salles

Executive Production:
Natalia Gouveia

Account Director:

Kira Nayana

André Carvalho

Production Director:
Leandro Beltran

3D Motion:
Leandro Beltran
José Rafael

Letícia Fagundes

CGI Director:
Wesley Oliveir


Karen Hofstetter

Founder & Creative Director

Born and raised in São Paulo, Karen Hofstetter is a Berlin-based art & creative director with over 16 years of experience in the fields of branding and visual arts.

She graduated with a degree in Social Communication from FAAP São Paulo, a masters in Graphic Design & Advertising from the Pan American School of Art (São Paulo)  and User Experience at Hyper Island (Stockholm).

From 2015 to 2018, Karen launched and ran OH K, an ecommerce platform that partnered with independent artists and local makers to create products that reflected on women’s rights issues. This experience taught her about the challenges of solo entrepreneurship and the social and environmental responsibility that brands and communicators have in our modern society. 

Her true passion lies in working on projects and people who are committed to positive social impact and help them find creative solutions for complex problems.