So many fishing products get used and abused only to end up in a landfill.
Or worse—they’re abandoned to float around our coasts.
Rope is one of the most prolific polluters.
One Port McNeill woman took a look at all the rope local fishers were tossing out and decided it was time to reuse it.
“I looked at these ropes, and asked myself, ‘what can I make of them?’” Joy Moody told West Coast Now.
She headed to her local library, checked out a book on weaving, and set sail.
At the beginning of 2020, she launched 2nd Chance Ropeworks.
Each mat is intricate, a true art piece. For her, though, the real art is telling the stories of each one.
Every rope she uses has been through miles of ocean and passed through many hands. Especially in Port McNeill, fishing is as much a part of the culture as breathing.
Joy wanted to celebrate that.
“Our families, friends, and neighbours are the tough commercial fishermen who used these lines to bring wild nutritious fish to our tables. I am happy to collaborate with local commercial fishermen to receive and ReUse these scarred old lines with an amazing history,” she said on her Facebook page.
Every buyer gets something unique and learns the story behind the “life” of each rope used to make it.
And some of her stuff is super rare!
Take these old lines, for example:
“Brown ground-lines were made in Norway, England and the US. They are no longer used in the fishing industry, old technology now, and no longer sold even! So occasionally I receive a coil that has sat in someone’s gear-shed for the last 10-20 years or longer! It’s precious because we will run out of it. Like the fishermen who used it, it’s tough rope to work with but will last indefinitely.”
Joy has been selling her mats since the pandemic hit.
People were thirsting for connection and very aware of the problems we were all facing together. Starting a new business at that time was a risk, but it took off!
“People started thinking more about where products are made, what they’re made of, and wanting things around them with history, individuality, and a story around them.”
Her business has been thriving ever since.
To date, she’s sold over 500 mats and repurposed over 35 kilometres of worn-out longline!
But most importantly, she’s bringing a greater awareness of the local fishing history—and appreciation for the folks who go out every day, working hard to put food on all our tables.
One mat at a time.