About Us

Public Thread is a community-based upcycling company working to divert scrap and surplus textiles from our landfills, create living wage jobs, and support a growing creative economy.

What We Do

We’re elevating the upcycled marketplace and reducing the environmental impact of manufacturing.

We launched in June 2016 with a dream of making high quality, small-batch sewn products right here in Michigan. By creating something new out of materials that already exist, we keep thousands of pounds of textiles from the landfill, including grain bags, specialty fabrics, traditional textiles, banners, signs, and billboards.

Our designers transform these rescued materials into a diverse collection of exceptional, expertly-crafted products for the mindful consumer.

Our Values

We believe in honoring the people who make the products we buy, wear, and use. As a result, we pay living wages in an industry too often based on low-wage or slave labor.

Public Thread upholds a triple bottom line, prioritizing people, planet, and profit. We are equally dedicated to caring for each other, reducing our environmental impact, and building a successful business.

Our Founder & CEO

Janay Brower

Prior to starting Public Thread, Janay worked for more than 13 years in the public and nonprofit sectors on community-level systems change. Her work was in various community and education systems focused on designing effective community systems for children and families.

Through her work, Janay learned that what people really need is living wage economic opportunity, access to quality education, and healthcare. It was her goal to build something which honored those who make our products by paying a living wage, while allowing for creativity in the process.


Lisa Knight

Lisa Knight brings her skills in community leadership to Public Thread. As a community activist, she worked in the homeless sector, youth advocacy and education, program direction and creation, and entrepreneurship. Her extensive leadership experience shines in her ability to organize, manage, and maintain resources and her team.

As a visionary organizer, Lisa leads operations at Public Thread along with developing strategic partnerships for impact. Lisa’s life in theater production brings creative engagement to Public Thread’s growing team and purpose.