If you cringe each time you look spot vegetable peels strewn on the road or discarded plastic and glass bottles, meet Natasha D’Costa of Dirt, who firmly believes that waste has a lot of value.
A tyre garden
Located in an old building in one of Bandra’s bylanes, Dirt was started in June 2014 by D’Costa and her partner Christopher Pereira. Their mantra is waste management and the upcycling of products. The store comprises an in-house workshop and a nursery. Practising what they preach, this concept store also has its own waste and water management system.
Plastic bottle chandelier. Pics/Sayed Sameer Abedi
For green thumbs
If you’re planning to grow a kitchen garden, opt for varieties like Malabar spinach, purple cabbage, herbs like lemongrass and oregano as well as fruiting plants like strawberries (seasonal) stocked by Dirt. The indoor options include bok choy,
broccoli, rocket leaves, lettuce and rosemary.
Coffee table made using paint bucket
Instead of the regular planters, get colourful single bottle planters (Rs 450) or a wooden frame garden (Rs 5,000) fitting in 16 plants, that can be mounted on your wall. One of the more unique varieties is a tyre garden (Rs 4,500) where a large tyre, upcycled into a planter, can pack in roughly 18 plants.
This window-sill garden comes with an automatic watering system. This one hasn’t been manually watered for a year
The best part is that the store helps set these up at your home. We particularly liked the window-sill garden that comprised three planters with 48 plants, and came with an automatic watering system as well as attached bottle lamps. A tad steep at Rs 28,000, this can work only for those with the luxury of balconies.
Coffee and compost
Do you fancy adding fresh herbs to your morning cuppa? Get their coffee table (Rs 2,250). Made from a paint bucket with holes in it, you can grow edible plants in it, just pluck fresh leaves and give your chai an upper. Growing insect repellents is also a good option if you plan to use this table in your balcony.
A giant Christmas Tree created out of discarded plastic bottles that also acts as a shade for seating.
To add kitsch to your décor, choose from a chandelier created out of plastic bottles cut in different shapes (Rs 3,750), or seats created out of discarded plastic bottles (Rs 5,000 for 24x24 inches). In fact, the store also has the facility to customise your waste materials into upcycled goods.
Chairs created using a window shutter cost Rs 12,000 and a seesaw made from a discarded tyre costs Rs 3,500
One of the most interesting products available here is the Composting Drum that can be used by several families and placed in the building compound.
Dirt, a waste management and upcycling store at Bandra (W)
Keep filling the drum with wet and dry biodegradable waste, rotate it twice a day for a month and lo, you’ll discover compost that can be used to grow trees in the building.
Plastic bottle seats
A set of two drums, with a 10 kg daily capacity that can take in the waste of around 10 families, costs '10,000. If this isn’t total waste management, pray, what is?
Time: 9.30 am to 6.30 pm
At: Dirt, Belvedere building, 18, Rebello Road, opposite Supari Talao ground, Bandra (W).