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Ruby room | ruby room toolbox

Operation: Haute Off The Press 23.08.22

We have relaunched Liam Patterns! AND the colossal misprint has turned into something really awesome.

We are now printing all Liam Patterns on waste paper from NZME’s print production of The Zealand Herald. Turns out, one media company’s waste is one clothing company’s treasure.

Printing on the offcut paper of one of New Zealand’s largest media companies? Seems so obvious. I mean, we print our patterns on newsprint. NZME prints The New Zealand Herald on newsprint. There is always waste in large-scale production. We are committed to finding circular solutions.

But in that classic “hindsight is a wonderful thing” vibe, when we were swimming around in the depths of “omg we have used the last of our New Zealand made paper stocks and the mill has closed down wtf are we going to do?”, it wasn’t actually clear.

Here are the things that I know that I knew, but now know even deeper in my bones:


I got in touch with Dan Ahwa from NZME:

“A bit of a rando question…Do you know who would be a good person to be in touch with from your side about what you guys are doing for newsprint? I really really REALLY want to keep using paper that is New Zealand made, and I’m not ready to give up the dream! Any insights or connections very much appreciated”

Dan put me in touch with Matt Wilson, the COO at NZME who was incredibly generous in inviting my LP wingman Briar to visit the NZME printing facility.


At this stage, we were still thinking that NZME might be able to help us source more New Zealand made paper. But when Briar went and met with Russell Wieck, NZME’s Operations Manager, and wandered around the print facility a little, she realised that actually the paper offcuts from printing The Herald could actually BE our solution.


Briar is one of those people who when she laughs, she really laughs. And you feel so proud to have made her laugh because it’s a true laugh, one that I think gives joy to the world. I can’t point to a specific example of why this meant this project was successful. But 100% it was crucial.

The possibilities of this discovery are huge! Most of the clothing industry that makes things in New Zealand (whether it is samples or bulk production) use newsprint. For example, at RUBY we use it as the bread in a shifty-fabric sandwich when cutting samples, to print markers that our cutters lay on top of layers of fabric to cut bulk production, or to trace patterns to send to our factories in China.

Turns out my friends that what I THOUGHT was the best thing (printing our patterns on paper produced in New Zealand using New Zealand wood) was just a starting point. And now we have found a NEW best thing. We’re able to use on average 50-60 metres from each newsprint reel end to create approximately 18-20 patterns per roll ;)

What will the NEXT best thing be? My brain is open to messages but for now enjoy our rerelease of Liam Patterns in all RUBY stores and online here.

Em xx

Liam Patterns Bucket Hat

Liam Bucket Hat Pattern x VIVA

NZME Newsprint Reels

Liam Bucket Hat Instructions


SIDES. Pin 2 SIDE pieces together at the sides with right sides facing. Sew a 1cm wide seam allowance. Press the seam allowance open.


TOP. Place 1 layer of the top piece to the top edge of the SIDE (smaller curve) with right sides facing and pin in place. Match the notches on the TOP piece to the seams of the SIDE piece. Attach the top to the sides with a 1cm seam allowance.


Repeat steps 1 & 2 for the inside layer.


BRIM. Place the fusible on the wrong side of your main fabric. Fuse all Brim pieces. Iron fusible on a low setting.


Pin 2 BRIM pieces together at the sides with right sides facing. Sew a 1cm wide seam allowance. Press the seam allowance open.


Repeat step 4 for the brim inside layer.


Pin the BRIM outer and inside layers together at the brim edge (widest curve) and pin in place. Match the seams. Sew a 1cm seam. Fold the brim out so the right sides are facing. Press around the edge of the brim. OPTION: Sew detail topstitching on the BRIM of the hat.


With the two hat pieces (TOP/SIDE) pin together the raw edge with the WRONG SIDES touching, sew to attach along raw edge.


Join the SIDE/TOP of the hat to the BRIM. With right sides facing and matching the seams pin in place. Sew with a 1cm seam allowance. Overlock along the raw edges.

Now your bucket hat is done!

Enjoy x


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