CR+A Custom is working with L.A. Metro to turn vinyl banners into reusable tote bags, an effort that helps divert waste from landfills to prevent them from filling up.
The banners are used as signs to promote L.A. Metro projects or to inform users about new programs.
Vinyl can be recycled, but the process isn’t always cost effective, so crafting bags out of the banners is a more viable option.
When the banners reach the end of their useful life, CR+A Custom arranges to pick them up, cleans them and produces the bags.
“Why Not Use Them Again?”
The association between CR+A Custom and L.A. Metro was possible because CR+A Custom had already created reusable bags and other items out of vinyl banners.
“We have printed some amazing graphics, and many of the banners have really beautiful, artistic designs. It seemed a shame to throw them away,” said Carmen Rad, owner of CR+A, to The Source, a blog covering public transportation in Los Angeles. “A lot of investment is made into creating these graphics, so why not use them again? So we offered to turn the banners into bags.”
Each bag takes approximately 15 to 30 minutes to produce. They were designed-in house by L.A. Metro, but each one is unique as the banner it’s made from.
The tote bags come in three sizes: small, medium and large, and they are provided to L.A. Metro staff to hand out at public events. This represents an added advantage, as it allows L.A. Metro to purchase fewer items to give away.
As of this date, L.A. Metro has created more than 10,000 bags and plans to expand the program to include other materials.
A Success Story That Started in a Spare Bedroom
CR+A Custom was founded as an apparel company out of a spare bedroom in San Gabriel, California, in 1993, and transitioned to large format printing in 2005.
Nowadays, 27 years after its foundation, the company serves two continents and the Caribbean, constantly defying the odds and offering creative solutions by asking simple but smart questions such as “Why not use them again?”
CR+A Custom is proud to contribute to the efforts to reduce waste and improve the life of the Angelenos. We look forward to offering other innovative solutions, always in keeping with our motto: “We solve problems before they’re problems.”