DUBAI, UAE – Capturing both the spirit of innovation embedded in Emirates’ culture, and an ongoing environmental commitment to consuming responsibly, Emirates is launching a unique capsule collection of luggage, bags and accessories – all fashioned from upcycled materials from retrofitted aircraft.
The limited-edition range features a selection of suitcases, backpacks, handbags, cardholders, toiletry bags, belts and even shoes – all designed and handmade by Emirates tailors in a dedicated cabin workshop, at Emirates Engineering facility in Dubai. Scheduled for sale in 2024 in Emirates Official Stores, all proceeds will be donated to children in need, via the Emirates Airline Foundation. A selection of bags and accessories will also be on display at the Dubai Airshow in DWC, from 13-17 November, on the Emirates stand.
Offering a chance to own a piece of history, the materials used to craft the stylish collection have been gathered from the iconic Emirates A380, as well as from 777 aircraft. All kinds of surprising materials have been repurposed for the luggage and bags, from aluminium headrests, to leather from couches in the A380 onboard lounge, to seatbelts and even fur from the Captains seat. From 16 retrofitted aircraft, more than 14,000kg of materials have already been recovered. As the project continues, there is scope to recover up to 270kg of leather and 627kg of seat fabric, per retrofitted aircraft.
The materials used are high quality pure leather from the First Class Seats, seat fabrics of 95% wool and pure leather from the Captain’s seats. All fabrics are freshly laundered in a facility, then further deep cleaned by hand, leather-conditioned if required, and thoroughly disinfected before being sewn into unique pieces. Brand new lining is added to the bags, along with functional zippers.
Emirates has a team of 14 ‘tailors’, officially titled as Engineering Maintenance Assistants, whose role involves fixing and stitching any tears in the interiors of Emirates vast aircraft fleet. Four of these tailors are currently dedicated full-time to the upcycling initiative, crafting upcycled products and collaborating with suppliers for ideas on how to repurpose various materials.
Ahmed Safa, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President for Engineering, said: “At Emirates, we are committed to constantly evolving our sustainability efforts, and looking at every aspect of our products and supply chain. We knew these materials could be given a second life, because they are originally of very high quality. We challenged our team to be as creative and innovative as possible, and here we are, with our own accessories workshop in Emirates Engineering Centre! This initiative is a passion project for our team, and we are immensely proud of how it aligns with both our innovation and sustainability aims, and even better – that all proceeds will benefit worthy causes via the Emirates Airline Foundation.’
The Emirates Retrofit Project
In August 2022, Emirates undertook the largest known fleet retrofit project, as part of a multi-billion-dollar investment to elevate customer experience. Emirates aims to upgrade the entire interior cabins of 120 of its Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 aircraft – two of the largest commercial aircraft types in service today. Managed entirely by Emirates’ Engineering team, the retrofit is a considerable project that will take a minimum of 2 years to complete. Once the 67 earmarked A380s are refreshed and back in service, 53 777s will then undergo their facelift. This will see nearly 4,000 brand new Premium Economy seats installed, 728 First Class suites refurbished and over 5,000 Business Class seats upgraded to a new style and design when the project is complete.
The article Emirates launches limited edition luggage and accessories made from upcycled aircraft interiors first appeared in TravelDailyNews International.
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Author: Theodore Koumelis