Category Archives: Reuse Design

Recycling+Building Materials – International Business Times

In today’s world “going green” has become a top priority in our society, and sustainable buildings and design are at the forefront of this green revolution. While many designers are focusing on passive and active energy systems, the reuse of recycled materials is beginning to stand out as an innovative, highly effective, and artistic expression of sustainable design. Reusing materials from existing on site and nearby site elements such as trees, structures, and paving is becoming a trend in the built environment, however more unorthodox materials such as soda cans and tires are being discovered as recyclable building materials. Materials and projects featured after the break.

Most common building materials today have recyclable alternatives. Concrete, metals, glass, brick and plastics can all be produced with some form of the previously used material, and this process of production lowers the energy requirement and emissions by up to ninety percent in most cases. Studio Gang Architects’ SOS Children’s Villages Lavezzorio Community Center utilized the ability to use left over concrete aggregate from construction sites in the surrounding Chicago area. The project features these different types of aggregate in an artistic expression of how and when the concrete was poured during construction.

Another popular trend regarding recycled building materials is the use of site provided materials. As environmental designers, we continually replace natural landscapes with our own built environment, and today our built environment is embellishing the natural environment in a responsible (while still aesthetic) manner. Projects such as the Ann Arbor District Library by inFORM Studio and the Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation Synagogue by Ross Barney Architects are reaping the harvest of their sites. The architects at inFORM researched the site for the Ann Arbor Library to find that ash trees from the surrounding forest were being destroyed by insects and could be salvaged into various surfaces within the building. Ross Barney Architects responded to the more urban site of the Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation Synagogue with a similar tactic by repurposing demolished trees into exterior sheathing, torn up paving and pre-existing structure into gabion walls, and even reusing part of the existing building foundation.

When a site has little to give, designers have begun to search within other demolished environments. Juan Luis Martínez Nahuel has found new uses for building elements from other architectural projects in his Recycled Materials Cottage in Chile. The design revolved around the available materials from demolished buildings including glazing from a previous patio as the main façade; eucalyptus and parquet floors as the primary surface covering; and steel and laminated beams from an exhibit as the main structure for the house.

While these methods of reused building materials have become popular in sustainable, contemporary architecture, other designers are experimenting with more unorthodox materials. Archi Union Architects Inc. have developed a wall system that contains a grid of empty soda cans in their mixed-use project,Can Cube. The can filled façade is even adjustable for daylighting by occupants.

Alonso de Garay Architects also discovered a new use for an uncommon object in the building system of their Recycled Building in Mexico City. A series of hanging car tires are constructed to possess and grow traditional species of Mexican plants. While creating a sustainable green wall system, the tires also define exterior space within the complex.

As the process of recycling materials continues to increase as a fashionable and sustainable statement in the architectural world, designers are proposing groundbreaking and futuristic methods that push the boundaries of how we think and build. NL Architects submitted an idea for The Silo Competition that transformed the structure of an old sewage treatment silo into a rock climbing facility and mixed-use residential and commercial spaces. This design addresses the structure and form as a reusable material able to contain an extremely efficient program.

Architects: Studio Gang ArchitectsinFORM StudioRoss Barney ArchitectsAlonso de Garay ArchitectsNL Architects
Photographs:  Paula BaileySteve HallJustin Machonachie, Juan Luis Martinez Nahuel, Sheng Zhonghai, Jimena Carranza, NL Architects

 

via Recycling+Building Materials – International Business Times.

Reuse Alliance Expands Board — NEW YORK, Aug. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ —

Two Reuse Leaders Extend Commitment to Sustainability, Join National Reuse Nonprofit

NEW YORK, Aug. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Michael Meyer of Goodwill Industries International and Nathan Benjamin of PlanetReuse and PlanetRestore are furthering their commitment to the reuse movement by joining the Board of Reuse Alliance — a national nonprofit working to increase awareness of reuse by educating the public about its social, environmental and economic benefits.

Michael Meyer is Vice President of Business Development and Strategic Sourcing for Goodwill Industries International Inc., which provides services to 165 independent, community-based Goodwill® agencies. Meyer’s work focuses on creating business relationships that support four key areas of the Goodwill social enterprise: leveraging buying opportunities through strategic sourcing; contract opportunities for the employment of those served by Goodwill; Goodwill’s retail business, through the acquisition of goods and services for its more than 2,500 store locations, and business models for reuse, repurpose, landfill diversion and sustainable consumption for the billions of pounds of donations that enter our donation stream. “Reuse Alliance establishes another platform through which organizations and consumers can engage and participate in meaningful reuse/repurpose activities that directly impact the very communities in which they live and do business. I am pleased to have been appointed to serve on its board and am looking forward to supporting the strategic direction of the Reuse Alliance,” said Meyer.

Nathan Benjamin (LEED AP) is the Principal and Founder of PlanetReuse and PlanetRestore. PlanetReuse is a reclaimed construction material brokerage and consulting firm with national reach, to help commercial designers and architects incorporate reclaimed building materials into new projects. PlanetRestore serves the residential construction market by offering reuse centers (e.g. Habitat for Humanity ReStores) throughout North America, technology and services to instantly post reclaimed building materials to the web, sell more materials, faster by dramatically increasing inventory exposure and simplifying point-of-sale. A staunch believer in the necessity and value of sustainable design and construction, Benjamin created these companies to take that ideal a step further. PlanetReuse and PlanetRestore are predicated on a simple but revolutionary idea: make it easy for people to use reclaimed materials and they’ll do more of it, keeping those materials out of landfills. He holds an architectural engineering degree and has been a fixture in the construction industry for more than a decade, focusing on sustainable and LEED-certified projects. He has presented on the topic of reclaimed materials at industry conferences nationwide, and is also well known for his passion for sustainability, the arts and community involvement. “Reuse Alliance is a remarkable organization that provides a great way to bring together local, regional, and national communities to raise awareness and create partnerships around reuse. I am looking forward to the opportunity to work with the Board to advance the critical work that has been accomplished in its initial years,” said Benjamin.

As Reuse Alliance board members, Meyer and Benjamin will support a national movement to increase public awareness and access to innovative reuse and waste prevention services. Rounding out the board of directors is Ann Woodward, The Scrap Exchange; Harriet Taub, Materials for Arts; Joe Connell, Portland Metro Habitat for Humanity ReStores; Lorenz Schilling, Deconstruction and Reuse Network; Mary Ann Remolador, Reuse Marketplace; MaryEllen Etienne, Reuse Alliance; and Stefanie Feldman, Waste Management. “I look forward to working with such a knowledgeable and enthusiastic team that shares a common commitment and passion to promote the triple bottom line benefits of reuse,” stated MaryEllen Etienne, Executive Director of the Reuse Alliance.

via Reuse Alliance Expands Board — NEW YORK, Aug. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ —.

Reclaimed lumber adds history to new home – Canada

Wide boards of reclaimed wood from the Canadian Heritage Timber Co. provide a warm base for this sunlit kitchen.

Wide boards of reclaimed wood from the Canadian Heritage Timber Co. provide a warm base for this sunlit kitchen.

Photograph by: Handout, Vancouver Sun

EDMONTON – Dear Leanne: We are planning to build a second home in Canmore and would love to use reclaimed lumber for the floors. Do you have any comments on this product and where to get it?

We have talked to a few flooring companies and have not received positive comments on the product.

A: Reclaimed wood is more than flooring, in my view; it is an art form that pays homage to our heritage. Reclaiming wood refers to salvaging the wooden remains of deconstruction sites such as historical homes, old buildings, mills, warehouse or barns.

The wood that is reclaimed holds the story of the building it had originally supported. It reflects a place in time and honours the craftsmanship involved in the original construction.

Another major interest people have in using reclaimed lumber is the eco-friendly nature of this resource. There are a few companies, with the closest Canadian companies being in British Columbia, that take great pride in restoring previously used lumber for various applications.

During the salvaging and restoration process, the lumber is categorized into suitability for interior flooring, decking, beams, mantles, stair rungs or furniture. In addition to determining structural integrity, the process is quite elaborate involving hand-grading each plank, sizing for both random and custom lengths and sanding to bring out the natural beauty each plank possesses. See a slide video at canadianheritagetimber.com.

There is a great deal of labour involved to get the wood from its original state to one that can be reused in homes today. It is no surprise that this product also costs more than the prefabricated wood floors that are a beautiful and readily available alternative.

One video I suggest you take a look at is offered by another B.C. company, Second Wind Timber. This video shows the splendour and versatility of reclaimed wood as an Alberta client takes you on a tour of her beautiful home overlooking Shuswap Lake.

I suggest you contact the companies that process these products directly to gain a greater understanding of the specific availability, limitations and costs involved. They can also give you names of clients that have used their products to get a truly unbiased view of choosing reclaimed wood.

Dear Leanne: I would like to add a solarium on to my home and wondered if you could tell me how to make sure it is energy efficient.

A: Adding a solarium or sunroom onto your existing house is a great idea. Planning is the key to longterm enjoyment. When it comes to building onto your home I always recommend you seek the advice of a professional who has expertise the in the area you require — and a client list you can call as a reference check.

There are a few steps you need to consider regardless of who will build the solarium.

Step 1: Determine how you want to use this room. Is it intended to grow plants, be used as a sitting room, a kitchen nook, house a hot tub or increase your current floor space?

Step 2: Consult with a contractor and designer if you are intending to construct this from scratch. This expertise will ensure you have adequate foundations, electrical/ plumbing, insulation, ventilation (important for room temperature as well as moisture control), window construction and security. If you currently have a security provider, ensure you inform them of this new project as it should be protected as well.

You may have decided to use a prefabricated room addition. See your yellow page listings or Google local solarium manufacturers.

Step 3: Ensure you have all permits in place for this construction. An experienced contractor can guide you effortlessly through this process.

Step 4: Plan a product list that will ensure the maximum effectiveness regarding energy efficiency. With glass being the predominant building material used in this structure you can understand why this room will not be the most energy-efficient room in your home.

There are a few things you can do to ensure the solarium is cool in the heat of the summer and yet warm in the winter without taxing your energy bill. Many all-year-round prefabricated solariums offer state-of-the-art window construction to improve temperature fluctuations during seasonal extremes.

If you are building yourself, ensure you use high quality windows. This is the most critical building product for reducing energy losses.

Other considerations include incorporating a stone floor to absorb heat and window treatments that can allow you to control the sun and heat throughout the day, while increasing your privacy at night.

An electric ceiling fan will also aid in moving air, and although does not have the same results as air conditioning, it is more energy efficient.

Leanne Brownoff is an Edmonton interior design consultant who welcomes your questions at leannebrownoff@shaw.ca. Answers will be featured in her column as high volumes prevent individual e-mail responses. Also follow Leanne at http://twitter.com/LeanneBrownoff

© Copyright (c) The Edmonton Journal

via Reclaimed lumber adds history to new home.

Give building materials another go – Oregon

Christa Summers prices items while working at the Albany Habitat ReStore. The ReStores offer new life to previously used materials, a growing trend. (David Patton/Democrat-Herald)

Old blue jeans. Wine-stained barrels. Aged, weathered boards.

Most people would see these things and toss them in the trash. But a growing number of builders, artisans and homeowners are looking at them and seeing not an ending, but a beginning.

As reclaimed and recycled building materials grow in popularity, more and more old components are being saved from eternity in a landfill and given new life in someone else’s home.

“It’s about the lifestyle,” said Ben Metzger, owner of Metzger Green Build, a Corvallis construction company that has worked extensively with recycled and reclaimed materials. “It’s not just that you’re not using a new thing. It’s about saving an old thing from death and bringing it back to life.”

Anyone who has walked by a work site knows that construction generates waste: a Dumpster full of wood scraps and carpet pieces is a normal sight. And if an old structure has to be torn down before a new one is built, even more trash is generated. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, building construction generates 170 million tons of waste annually – almost 60 percent of the nation’s nonindustrial solid waste.

Over the past decade, however, more and more builders and homeowners are finding ways to take what would be trash and turn it into treasure.

‘Re-building’ options

Mike Baylor said that from doors to windows to light fixtures, Habitat for Humanity ReStores see thousands of items come through their doors rather than into landfills every year. Across the nation, Habitat ReStores and other re-building centers are part of a growing network of places where contractors can drop off their leftovers, and bargain hunters can come search for secondhand building materials.

“You see a lot of fun stuff come and go,” Baylor said.

The EPA estimates that more than 1,200 re-building stores are in operation nationwide. The Albany ReStore celebrated its 10th year in business in March. Baylor said the Albany store alone has saved more than a million pounds of building material from the landfill.

Metzger said that consumers in the environmentally conscious Pacific Northwest are especially receptive to the idea of using reclaimed and recycled materials. He’s been in business five years and in the construction industry for 15 years, and he said he’s seen a continued growth in the use of reclaimed and recycled materials.

Metzger said that he often looks for reusable pieces on the job. For instance, paperstone, a Corian-like solid surface counter top material, can only be sold by the piece, and he often sees excess chunks of it.

“The leftover piece from one person’s kitchen counter might become someone else’s small bathroom vanity,” he said.

Deconstruction

Of course, it’s not always that easy.

“The trouble is warehousing. You can’t necessarily just take it from one job to another. You have to have a place to keep it, and that’s the challenge, getting it from point A to point B,” he said.

What’s more, it takes time to pick through old structures in a process called deconstruction – more time and manpower than it does to bring in heavy machinery and smash it to bits.

“There is an embodied energy involved in getting it back in as a second or third life,” Metzger said.

But when it does happen, the traces of those previous lives can add value to the reclaimed product.

Chris Vitello, owner of the EarthSmart store in Corvallis, sells many items that used to be something else, from insulation made of shredded blue jeans to furniture made of old barn wood. He said that some customers come in looking for reclaimed and recycled materials mainly for environmental reasons, while others want something more.

For instance, the furniture made from old barn wood – it’s not just any barn wood, but wood from a barn in Brownsville, a barn that, legend has it, once contained buried treasure. You can still see the original sawmill marks on the boards that make up the chairs.

“It’s a local story,” he said. “There’s a connection to the product. And when you tell people about the products, they just love the story.”

Metzger said that materials can come from anywhere – flooring from old gymnasiums, wood from sunken bays in the Philippines, barrels from Jack Daniels distilleries in Kentucky. “When you use something like that, it becomes this huge conversation piece,” he said.

He’s currently working on making furniture out of old wine and whisky barrels. “They’re still perfectly great pieces of wood,” he said. “The smell is almost overwhelming, and it’s this deep wine purple. It’s a very tactile experience to work with.”

Read the rest of the article here

via Give building materials another go.

India’s ‘recycled’ school teaches environmental lessons – The Times of India

 

Almost every part of the school premises is made out of recycled material, including roofs made out of old hoardings, walls built from plastic bottles and hand-stitched uniforms made out of eco-friendly ‘khadi’, or handspun, cloth.

“It isn’t a marketing thing, it’s what we believe and how we live,” says Madhavi Kapur, who started the school in 2008 with just four students. The school now has more than 140 students studying up to grade five.

“We didn’t have too much money to begin with, and one of my (former) students, who is an architect came up with the idea of using recycled materials to build the school on a piece of land leased to me by my brother,” she said.

via India’s ‘recycled’ school teaches environmental lessons – The Times of India.

Six residents get certificates in Hamden in deconstructing old buildings – Life – Post-Chronicle

HAMDEN — After nine weeks of training, six formerly unemployed adults are on their way to making a new livelihood with a new way of doing business.

It’s called deconstruction, and the concept is carefully to take down, not tear down, buildings so that materials can be saved and reused.

 

The Workforce Alliance provided a $49,500 grant that paid for tuition and materials to Gateway, and DeRisi taught the class once a week at the M.L. Keefe Community Center.

McCullough and Blakeslee said they were in the construction field previously.

“I was out of work for 2½ years. I really enjoyed it,” McCullough said of learning the new skill. “You can save 95 percent of the materials, and they’re reusable.”

See video here

 

via Six residents get certificates in Hamden in deconstructing old buildings – Life – Post-Chronicle.

How Do I Choose the Best Recycled Building Materials?

Recycled building materials can cut down on the environmental impact of construction projects when they are chosen wisely, with an awareness of the distance traveled, resource use involved in their production, and composition. Many large communities have a facility or facilities that handle reclaimed and recycled materials, and it may also be possible to go directly through a contractor for some products. Consumers who want to use recycled building materials should be aware of the risk of greenwashing, where companies make environmental claims that are not actually backed by the products they produce.

It is important to distinguish between recycled and reclaimed or salvaged materials. Recycled building materials are made with some percentage of post-consumer content and can include things like glass, engineered wood products, ceramics, and so forth. Reclaimed and salvaged materials are used materials that are removed during demolition and other activities, cleaned up, and sold for reuse. It is possible to use a mixture of recycled and reclaimed materials, depending on the need.

via How Do I Choose the Best Recycled Building Materials?.

Shopping | Personalize your wedding with recycled materials at The RE Store’s Salvage Bride workshop | NWsource

 

The second annual Salvage Bride workshop is a two-hour class designed to inspire creative ways to make a wedding distinctive and personal with recycled materials.

Rachel Levien, former manager of The RE Store, dreamed up the original workshop last year when she and then-fiancé Ben began planning their own wedding. “I started seeing everything around me in terms of potential ‘wedding value’,” she recalls.

Since she spent her workdays among the recycled building materials for sale at The RE Store, “I guess it’s only natural that I started fixating on things like vintage plumbing, chandelier crystals, skeleton keys and old doors,” she says.

 

via Shopping | Personalize your wedding with recycled materials at The RE Store’s Salvage Bride workshop | NWsource.

NASA Sustainability Base opens

 

NASA’s Sustainability Base, a US $20 million unique building that incorporates technology used by astronauts, is expected to open in mid July in the Silicon Valley of California. NASA set out to build the federal government’s most sustainable building. It will generate more electricity than it consumes, and each part of the building performs an environmental function. Local building materials were used to help reduce emissions from transportation, and construction waste was recycled.

The building uses recycled glass, carpeting and furniture. The oak flooring was salvaged from a demolished wind tunnel facility.

via NASA Sustainability Base opens.

Reclaiming Design – ScribeMedia.org

 

Watch the video here http://www.scribemedia.org/2007/07/05/reclaiming-design/

This event at HauteGREEN in New York was a big success, thanks to the thought-provoking design and insightful discussion from Dwell Editor-in-Chief Sam Grawe and designers Carlos Salgado of Scrapile, Tejo Remy of Droog fame, and Matt Gagnon. The conversation touched on a variety of issues surrounding the concepts and processes behind using reclaimed materials in different scales of design, and its implications for both environmental sustainability as well as more conceptual and cultural themes.

via Reclaiming Design – ScribeMedia.org.

Instructables.com ! Lifeguard Chair from Recycled Lumber

Lifeguard Chair from Recycled Lumber

The inspiration for this chair came from seeing one on a pier at Lake Tahoe. It’s big – seating two pretty comfortably – and tall, affording a nice view along with protection from cannonballs and wet dogs.

This one is made from lumber recycled from a redwood deck we ripped out. The weathering, stains and screw holes all add to character of the chair even after rigorous sanding on the seat, footrest, arms and back. With ‘free’ lumber, the cost for this chair was two boxes of screws, some glue and sand paper. (And in my case, a belt sander – but that’s an investment, right?)

via Lifeguard Chair from Recycled Lumber.

Raumlabor’s ‘Big Crunch’ is an Incredible Building Made from Discarded Materials | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World

“The Big Crunch” by Raumlabor is a recycled building made from a heap of discarded objects. The mound of materials is condensed in a theater plaza from all over the area, seemingly to move like a small wave cresting on the Georg-Büchner-Platz grounds in Darmstadt, Germany. Made from cast away household materials ranging from fridges to windows, furniture, and doors, the installation is a stormy, absurdist habitation.

via Raumlabor’s ‘Big Crunch’ is an Incredible Building Made from Discarded Materials | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World.

Boeing Plant Camouflaged Beneath a Fake Neighborhood Tapped as Salvaged Lumber Source | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World

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South of downtown Seattle is an old Boeing airplane assembly plant that produced nearly 7000 Flying Fortresses while hidden beneath a roof with a fake suburban neighborhood on top. The site is now the source for a huge lumber salvage operation – Duluth Timber Company is now deconstructing the 1.7 million square foot facility and reclaiming the lumber for real homes. The beauty of reclaimed lumber is not just in its quality and size but in its history – and the 1/4 million board feet that will come out of this deconstruction has a lot of tales to tell.

via Green design will save the world | Inhabitat – Part 2.

Reclaimed Wood Hostel Bridge Awaits The Return Of the Emscher River In Germany | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World

Ten years from now the Emscher River in Germany, currently a canal between two dykes, will be returned to its natural state as a river. In celebration of the renaturification, the Dutch art group Observatorium built a habitable wooden bridge from reclaimed timbers to span the space where the river will eventually flow again. For the summer of 2010, Warten auf den Fluss was open to visitors and overnight guests so they could explore the area and experience the land that would soon be taken over by the river.

 

via Reclaimed Wood Hostel Bridge Awaits The Return Of the Emscher River In Germany | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World.

Centennial Woods Has Reclaimed and Repurposed Over 5 Million Feet of Fence | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World

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Centennial Woods reclaims wood from snow fences across Wyoming and sells the sustainable harvested wood for both interior and exterior applications. The wood is a stunning mixture of grays and browns in unique grain patterns that are characteristic of the windblown state of Wyoming. The company has repurposed more than 5 million feet of snow fence, saving snow fence owners more than $9 million and avoiding more than 9,000 tons of CO2 emissions. Unlike other reclaimed woods, Centennial Woods’ have never been painted or chemically treated, and are completely free of lead and other hazardous treatments common in older barns and other structures.

via Centennial Woods Has Reclaimed and Repurposed Over 5 Million Feet of Fence | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World.

Chez Chuichui: The coolest upcycled doghouse in Shanghai | MNN – Mother Nature Network

ChuiChui's upcycled refrigerator doghouse

Most recently, the Y-town team’s upcycled home appliance prowess took a turn for the heartwarmingly cute when one of the designers transformed an old Bosch refrigerator turned on its side into a spacious shelter for an adorable stray pup named Chuichui. Chuichui’s new digs come with a carpeted entrance/exit ramp, a slanted roof, and distinct living areas including a roomy “bedroom” that the Y-town designers outfitted with a plush pooch cushion.

via Chez Chuichui: The coolest upcycled doghouse in Shanghai | MNN – Mother Nature Network.

Outsider Architecture: 1 Man + 30 Years + 20,000 Sq Ft = | Designs & Ideas on Dornob

Slated for forced demolition, can the colossal  Phonehenge West yet be saved?

Marvel at the work that goes into such decade-spanning, single-person construction projects, the authorities are not always as impressed – one man may learn this lesson the hard way.

This specific dilemma raises a more timeless question, however, for historic preservation: at what point does personal or public interest play a valid role in creating exceptions to rules? One man’s scrap heap is another man’s castle of trash, after all – and asking someone to demolish their abode is a rather big deal. It would be unfair to call the work a pile of unsafe junk – much of it is traditionally-framed and solidly-built, even if it does not conform to traditional typological norms.

via Outsider Architecture: 1 Man + 30 Years + 20,000 Sq Ft = | Designs & Ideas on Dornob.

Smile Stools Take on a Cheery Form with Eco-friendly Recycled Wood | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World

 

zero waste,social design,Recycling / Compost,Recycled Materials,Green Resources,Green Products,green furniture,indonesian design,smile stool,recycled wood,furniture industry,chinese industry,coconut oil

Designed by Studio Hindia, the Smile Stool is made from scrap wood left over from local Balinese furniture maker studios and finished with coconut oil. Standing happy and always smiling, this bent wood stool is in fact a comment on the sad situation of the declining Indonesian furniture industry.

via Smile Stools Take on a Cheery Form with Eco-friendly Recycled Wood | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World.

Glass ‘Odyssey Lamp’ Gives Recycled Bottles a New Life | Inhabitat

 

 

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Shortly after 9/11, designer Ismael Quintero spotted a fire hydrant lid on the sidewalk that gave him the inspiration for this poetic Odyssey lamp. Made from recycled green beer bottles and embossed with the phrase “Nostri Lumen Est Una” which means “our light is one,” the lamp was designed to help people remember that tragic day while at the same time healing from it.

 

via Glass ‘Odyssey Lamp’ Gives Recycled Bottles a New Life | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World.

Not just any old rubbish – SalvoNews.com

I love Salvo News!

London West, UK – Eat your heart out Albert Steptoe: architects and clients alike are seeking discarded materials for their buildings, driven by environmental concerns, the recession and the look of it. But it’s more than cosmetic: if you want to use recycled stuff in your project you’ll have to start thinking differently about design.

When Martin Pawley wrote Garbage Housing in 1975 he thought of using all sorts of consumer waste, from car tyres and body parts, the Heineken World Bottle which stacked as a brick and newsprint cores. But there’s an easier way: use waste from the construction industry.

 

via Not just any old rubbish – SalvoNews.com.

Architect and Author Alejandro Bahamon – Inhabitat

Material reuse has been a wildly popular trend in sustainable architecture over the last decade. Using old materials and giving them a new life in a building not only keeps those materials from wasting away in a landfill, but also adds a considerable amount of character to the finished project. Architect Alejandro Bahamón and artist Maria Camila Sanjinés were fascinated by the use of waste in architecture and decided to document 33 projects from around the world that extensively utilize a wasted material in their new book, REMATERIAL From Waste to Architecture. We had a chance to catch up with Alejandro Bahamón about his latest work — read on for our exclusive interview!

via INTERVIEW: Architect and Author Alejandro Bahamon on ‘REMATERIAL From Waste to Architecture’ Rematerial Book Review – Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World.

BottomFeeder and Garbage Fish

I just finished reading BottomFeeder: How to eat Ethically in a World of Vanishing Seafood by Taras Grescoe.  I fancy myself well informed when it comes to oceanic issues and the health of the world’s oceans (focusing mostly on garbage gyres).  But I was blown away by how much I didn’t know about the state of the world’s fish!  Environmental reporting literature usually sends me into a spiral of species-hatred (my own), depression and finally lingering guilt.  However, Grescoe has accomplished what other reporters have missed, which is to leave me feeling informed and eager to try out my newly uploaded knowledge about seafood.  For example, I will eat more sardines, anchovies, mackerel and smaller mid-level zone fish.  I will never touch another can of tuna, unless the world governments and fishing industry make some serious changes.  That is not to say that BottomFeeder isn’t a powerful book full of stories that will depress you about both fish and people.  But the information is balanced out by the notion that you can immediately address your impact – become a bottom feeder.

To celebrate my newly acquired knowledge, I present to you two artists work of garbage sculptures of fish, which I found on a great site called Recycleart.org

yukari1 Rubbish fish art : Yodogawa Technique

yukari2 Rubbish fish art : Yodogawa Technique

yukari3 Rubbish fish art : Yodogawa Technique

Artists Hideaki Shibata and Kazuya Matsunaga came together in 2003 as Yodogawa Technique to create works from the rubbish and miscellaneous objects found along Osaka’s Yodogawa River. Working with discarded consumer goods and driftwood, the crafty duo made sculptural pieces that are like physical collages and that initially do not even appear as if they are made from garbage.

++ Yukari Art Contemporary

ReUse Haus, a miniature dwelling made with used materials, on display at AltBuild | L.A. at Home | Los Angeles Times

ReuseHaus1

When it comes to green building, energy efficiency gets most of the attention. If reused building materials are discussed, it’s usually in context of de-construction, not re-construction using materials from demolished or remodeled homes.

The ReUse Haus on display at the AltBuild Expo running through Saturday in Santa Monica focuses on the reconstruction. The mini house, left, is meant to show that a recycled home “doesn’t have to look like a tree house,” said Ted Reiff, co-founder of the Oakland-based deconstruction firm the Reuse People.

via ReUse Haus, a miniature dwelling made with used materials, on display at AltBuild | L.A. at Home | Los Angeles Times.

T.O.M.T. Refitting the Planet

In the mail today I found The Other Man’s Treasures waiting for me.  T.O.M.T. is a studio located in New York.  Reuse inspiration never came in a cooler package!

T.O.M.T.™ (or The Other Man’s Treasures) is the best friend for trashed or forgotten objects and anything else you might throw away or overlook in your garages, pantries and other storage spaces.

Because of this orientation, T.O.M.T.™ has been referred to as a recycling company on occasion.

Well … we see ourselves as more than that, and something altogether different. Beyond bags of bottles and cans, beyond the corrugated cardboard boxes tied with string, beyond the papers and organic waste bins, lies a whole world of objects that are discarded with no regard. We find these objects, considered too “difficult” to recycle, all over this great city of Gotham. Our vigilante mission has been to recover and reassign the purpose of these objects. T.O.M.T.™ is our abandoned-object Batcave, and the endeavor of refitting the planet™ is already underway. The key to saving these forgotten objects is just keeping our eyes open and being open and ready to spot what we like to call “objects of desire” – old appliances, tires, whatever! We at T.O.M.T.™ like to think that we’re giving old junk and ordinary objects a new lease on life. In fact, after they’ve gotten the T.O.M.T.™ treatment, these objects take center stage as useful, beautiful, “high-end” furnishings. “It’s time for some of this stuff to live in the limelight!” says Trice. “No object has been neglected too long, been tossed too far or is too ordinary to be a star.” We don’t promise to know what to do with every misplaced object out there in the world, but we do believe there is some purpose to everything. Nothing is truly garbage. That’s fundamental to our philosophy. via About T.O.M.T..

T.O.M.T Refrigerator Door Dressing Mirror (one of my favorites!)