This line of stylish headphones made with reclaimed wood also has a deeper mission – to help restore hearing to a person in need.
© Marcel Dunger
Using humble pieces of broken maple wood, German product designer Marcel Dunger transforms these typically discarded pieces into lovely, minimalist accessories by joining them with eco-friendly bio-resins.
© Marcel Dunger
© Marcel Dunger
But there are already a huge number of houses and structures already built, but that aren’t usable in their current state, either because of years of neglect or being located in an area that isn’t desirable to live in, that could be “mined” for their building materials, which could be repurposed into a tiny house.
The convergence of growing crises in community, environment, technology and economy is laying the groundwork for practices such as car sharing, tool libraries and skill swaps. Echoing this encouraging move towards collaborative consumption (or sharing, for simplicity’s sake), designers Johanna Dehio & Dominik Hehl put together Construsine, a public kitchen workshop that allows participants to cook and build collaboratively using entirely donated and recycled materials.
Hamed Ouattara (Burkina Faso) says that he is “always working to bring out a design that reflects the realities of Africa”. He uses all different materials in his furniture. Reacting to the fact that there are too many imports of poor quality, and to the loss of traditional carved furniture, he is making modern furniture that reflects modern culture.
His furniture is made from salvaged metal sheets and frames made up with metal welding. They have a rugged and rough feel, very hip and modern at the same time.
TreeHugger has a great read today on an upcycled house. There is a lot going on in this article so be sure to read the entire post on TreeHugger.
One of the most misused words in the language is recycling. Reiner Pilz described what was really going on in 1994: “I call it downcycling. They smash bricks, they smash everything. What we need is upcycling- where old products are given more value, not less.” Bill McDonough picked up the term and has even just written a new book, the Upcycle.
In Nyborg, Denmark, Lendager Architects has built what they call the Upcycle House, “with the ambitious goal of being the first house build only from upcycled and environmentally sustainable materials.” I don’t think it is the first, and I don’t think they actually do it, but it gets awfully close.
Lendager defines upcycling:
Upcycling is a step beyond recycling, the materials are not just reused, but reused in a way where value and quality is added.
This year is different; the theme this year is RAW. Media director Naomi Tallin explained in an interview:
Raw is raw process, using raw materials, raw salvaged materials, the fundamentals that we learn to get us to a final refined project. We are trying to balance how the show has really refined finished pieces and show the visitors the in-between, the process. How do you represent that in a material way? We felt that the only way we could do that was using, reusing, and salvaging, and minimizing waste.
This is a fantastic article by TreeHugger on the 30 Best Moments in the DIY Movement this past year. Don’t miss it!
And one of the craziest DIY builds I saw all year was Gon KiRin, a Fire-Breathing Dragon Made from Recycled Scraps:
Go see this amazing slideshow of vintage recycling posters on TreeHugger!
It’s just a single word. But it says it all. Recycling scrap and other materials was a very big deal; they go through a lot of steel and aluminum in ships, planes and tanks, and the mills are working full out.
According to Jennifer Hattam over at TreeHugger, Baghdadi and Kradokian first tried upcycling when they were invited by gallery owner Rania Choueiri to take part in a recycled art and design exhibition earlier this summer at L’Atelier Fanfreluche in Beirut’s Mar Mikhail neighbourhood. The exhibit, “Trashy Treasures,” featured furniture, accessories, sculpture, and art works by 18 different artists.
Scouring junkyards, Baghdadi and Kradokian used old washing machine drums for the latest designs which makes the most of traditional designs and modern, upcycling principles. Together the two designers form the collective ‘Junk Munkez’ which also sells a collection of playful planters made from scrapped car parts and kitchen utensils.
Lea Kradokian in an email to Jennifer Hattam at TreeHugger said: “As a team we design with a green conscience, giving life to the lifeless heaps of Beirut’s rising metal mountains, in hopes of pushing other Lebanese designers to think green as well.”