Mandana M.
Mandana MacPherson
Browse Current Products on the “shop” page

Used Rubber USA, began in 1984 when I was a student at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.  After spilling a bottle of ink in my leather backpack, I set out on a quest to make a bag impervious to stains and spills.  While the initial prototypes and products that I created with my friend, classmate and early business partner Genevieve Overholser were inspired by the study of the Found Object art movement, I quickly became aware of the powerful and positive environmental impact of this area of work and continued the business for 20 years in San Francisco. To manufacture quality products in an environmentally sound fashion and from sustainability focused materials has been my goal ever since those early days.  Focusing on this goal in the late 80’s and early 90’s allowed me to pioneer the use of reclaimed inner tube rubber, reclaimed sailcloth, organic cotton, hemp & other materials.  

Through my company I have also been able to educate countless individuals about the benefits of reuse and the associated design opportunities.  I operated Retail stores in San Francisco and Berkeley between 1989 and 2001 and a short term store in Taos.  I created catalogs  from 1990-1997, and the products were available for wholesale distribution from 1990 to 2003.  The current online store went up in 1999.  Since 2003, I have placed an emphasis on the educational component of my rubber related work, teaching sustainability concepts and methodology through college and university classes and rubber recraft workshops.
The Original Inner Tube Bag & Wallet
Handcrafted Handbags and Wallets

Primary material
Reclaimed, Post Consumer Inner Tube Rubber, Aluminum Rivets

Born in Providence, RI
Refined in SF, currently in Maine!

Copyright © 2016 Mandana MacPherson - All Rights Reserved

As you can see, Used Rubber USA is an unusual company, both in what we make -- recycled inner tube wallets and bags -- and in how we choose to do business.  Our goal is not only to create great products, but also to promote eco-smart design in the process.  Our exposure in the press and the teaching that I have done at universities and design schools since the early 1990's have inspired new ideas about recycling and reuse and we are proud to see so many designers following our path-breaking work.

For the last decade much of the focus of Used Rubber USA has been on education. Through workshops and classes we have been able to advance sustainability in design and promote the acceptance of non traditional materials such as reclaimed inner tube rubber. 

If you have questions or a story to share about your experiences with our products please email

Mandana MacPherson - Designer/Founder