We all know that any promotion has a short shelf-life, even if the best publicity material becomes art, like the tin Coca-Cola signs that now sell for a fortune and hang in trendy loft apartments. So how can you get more for your promotional budget by moving your cost-effective promotional clothing into the realm of art?

Consider the example set by 36-year-old Khageswar Mallick from Jaipur, India. He’s a craftsman who takes old T-shirts and converts them into embroidered art with such skill that his recycled clothing craftwork has become collectable. He’s been recycling textiles for a decade and is now training thirty women in his district to do similar work, so that a textile art form can be established in the region.

For a business, this is an easy way to get good publicity. Invite people who own your promotional material to re-purpose it as bags or baby-slings, hammocks, pot-plant holders … whatever their ingenuity suggests to them. Feature a monthly winner on facebook, your blog and website and give them a suitable and imaginative prize. Your clothing could become cult material, and you could identify future ways to promote your product, band or service by seeing what resourceful individuals do with your promotional gear.