Denver business gives military gear new life

A Colorado business is taking some of the gear U.S. soldiers use in the field and giving it a new civilian life.

DENVER - A Colorado business is taking some of the gear U.S. soldiers use in the field and giving it a new civilian life.

Sword and Plough specializes in accessories, but these aren't just your typical handbags. Everything is made from materials recycled from the military. It was an idea Emily Nunez Cavness got when she was a senior in high school.

"I thought how awesome would it be to take military surplus fabrics that are so durable and turn them into bags and accessories that anyone could use in their daily life," she said.

After getting the idea, Emily enlisted help from her sister, Betsy Nunez.

"She just looked across the table at me and said, ‘What do you think if I were to turn this army tent into a tote bag,'" Betsy said.

The sisters are no strangers to military life. They grew up on military bases across the U.S. Their dad served in the army for more than 30 years, which inspired Emily to do the same.

"I served at Fort Carson down in Colorado Springs," Emily said. "I served in the engineer unit, deployed to Afghanistan and then served in a special forces three years."

Now, Emily and Betsy look to weave the military world and civilian world together through their business.

"Our whole mission is to strengthen civil military understanding, reduce waste and empower veteran employment," Emily said.

 

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Since starting in 2013, Sword and Plough has supported 65 veteran jobs and repurposed 35,000 pounds of military surplus, according to Emily and Betsy.

Sword and Plough was recently named the grand prize winner of the FedEx Small Business Grant contest. The company will get a $25,000 grant plus $7,500 in print and business services to help them grow their business.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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