Customers are taking note: 93% of global consumers expect more of the brands they use to support local social and environmental issues, according to a report by the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA). The report also found that an estimated 68 million adult Americans base purchasing decisions on their values – personal, social, and environmental – and say they will spend up to 20% more on environmentally sound products.
Sirish Satyavolu | Photo Credit: K.V.S. GIRI
‘Collab House at Out of the Box’ is currently working with Sirish towards upcycling trash to music playing instruments. This includes a series of meet-ups starting this Friday where people can come together, collect trash, design instruments and bring them to life at an in-house session .
Wardrobe painted blue with Annie Sloan paint
All of the furniture restored and upcycled at the Rediscovery Centre is donated by members of the public who no longer want it, but not all furniture has upcycling potential. “We’re fussy about what we take,” Griffin explains.
Enrico Moreno Cinzano has long had a passion for design, and now he has turned his attention to upcycling. His Manhattan apartment is full of furniture he’s made from found items. The chair he’s sitting in is made of hemp fibre and reclaimed pine timbers.
After an award-winning stint in edgy fashion design, Cinzano is now all about upcycling and using found objects to create his line of furniture.
The large ship measures 30 meters (98 feet) and weighs four tons. It was built from more than 500 pieces of reused materials, including seven kilometers (4.6 miles) of steel cable, wooden moulds, discarded furniture, signboards and boats found on site.
A large vessel called “a baştarda” built from waste materials in Istanbul was transported to Venice and installed at the pavilion as a symbol of cultural connections and transformation of borders.
David Kelvin and his fiancee Keshia Brushett are owners of Urban Designs, a company that uses old and unwanted wood to make custom-made furniture. (Samantha Lui/CBC )
“A lot of people are just interested in what we do and what we’re going to do with the wood,” he said. “There’s a lot of people who want their barns down and they don’t have the money or time to take care of it. For them, it’s a favour. We get something out of it and they get something out of it.”
Customers lined up at the door for the 10 a.m. opening. Customers pored over antique items at a once a month sale at the Small Town Salvage store in Bargersville Sunday January 17, 2016. Rob Goebel/Daily Journal
Small Town Salvage is a monthly pop-up event outside of Bargersville, bringing hundreds of people to scour their displays and bins looking for the perfect accent for their homes. Their popularity has stemmed from the increasingly trendy concept of up-cycling the old into something new. “We have to go out and physically hunt for this stuff. We’re looking for the barns, driving around the country, cold-picking,” Obergfell Gindling said.
Upcycled pallets become functional furniture. Photo via Shutterstock.
“Upmod is a social sharing marketplace for buyers and sellers of environmentally-conscious products made from used raw materials,” he said. “Upcycling is a major societal trend, but is still little understood as an industry, Upmod intends to change that and to consolidate major aspects of this emerging industry.”
Emily from Emily Rose Vintage; Sophie from Treemendus; Izzie Johnston from Zero Waste Scotland; Shauna from Treemendus and Jo from Very Vintage
Each week during the eight-week campaign the designers – Emily Rose Vintage and Treemendus from Glasgow and Very Vintage from Edinburgh – will work to transform an item of furniture and post the details on Twitter and Facebook.(l-r)
Items used to demonstrate techniques and ideas will all be provided by a range of secondhand stores that hold the Revolve accreditation, a reuse standard awarded to secondhand shops that demonstrate high levels of service and of products.
Matthew Stepp (left) and Mike Weston of Rusted Raven Furniture Co. upcycle furniture at their workshop in Hampden. Ashley L. Conti | BDN
Stepp and Weston are among several artists in Maine who are upcycling furniture and restoring old pieces.
The pair (Ashley & Zoe) turn upcycled rubber inner tubes from bike tires into floggers, whips, riding crops, and other kinky toys.
Since 2011 the RA has been a primary site for news and research on building material waste prevention. Posts on projects, programs, policy, people and the amazing progress made in reclaiming beautiful materials from going to waste!
- Over 3,000 links to inspiring stories, collaboration, and design
- Resource pages on reuse centers, regional policy, reuse design links
- Original content articles, featured artists, announcements, and internships
The building material reuse community is a thriving growing industry of professionals and policy-makers who are changing the world for the better! The Reclamation Administration is uniting this diverse community through daily news.
This free site needs capital to evolve. We need $5,000 for:
- Publication of our First Book on reclaimed designs by the talented craftspeople featured over the years
- New Logo and Marketing campaign to reach more readers
- Additional supply & demand Resource Pages to connect people to materials
- To become a Limited Liability Corporation: The Reclamation Administration, LLC
If the funding goal isn’t reached, The Reclamation Administration will continue to provide these services but at a much slower pace. There is a high demand for inspirational news on reclaimed building materials – and we want to answer the call!
The RA is an ongoing source of inspiration for design, policy, collaboration, business, environmental issues, job creation, and education. The RA features daily information highlighting the “Triple Bottom Line” model of sustainability. The RA provides daily news that People, Planet, and Profit are synergistic when reclaiming building materials.
- Social change in the form of job creation, and the establishment of Deconstruction as a Trade Skill
- Environmental and ecological impact through reducing the waste stream and limiting the need for consuming raw materials
- Financial profit from creating a new industry in harvesting and producing products from reclaimed building materials
Over 100,000 people have visited the RA since it’s creation with an average of 100 new visitors a day. Over 400 readers are dedicated followers.
Risks & Challenges
The RA has been operating as a blog for over three years. The new funds will go to registering The Reclamation Administration as a LLC. The RA is a Social Entrepreneurship – a business with a mission and we have a lot more to learn!
Here’s what we have so far:
- Over three years of support in consistent & reliable information on building material reuse
- Partnerships with national organizations, businesses, craftspeople, and government
- Small business graduate through Mercy Corps North West
Other Ways You Can Help
If you can’t contribute financially send us your news instead! We are always looking to spread the word and hear people’s stories on reuse. Send our campaign to someone you know, take a moment to pass it on – thank you.
- Get the word out about The Reclamation Administration
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When people think about cutting-edge architecture and design, they often think about high-costs and space-age technology. But a key component of the Living Building Challenge is to use as many recycled and reusable materials as possible to save natural resources, energy, and costs.
So for past year and a half, we’ve been dumpster diving to salvage and use materials for the Brock Center that otherwise would go to the local landfill.
Southwest is partnering with Kenyan social enterprise Alive and Kicking to make footballs from seat covers, but are projects like this viable? Photograph: Southwest Airlines
So Southwest joined the international upcycling trend. Partnering with upcycler Looptworks in Portland, Oregon, the airline will turn a portion of its leather seats into tote bags, duffle bags and backpacks that the airline will buy back to to use as gifts at events.
“The water conserved by making goods using old leather rather than virgin leather is enormous,” says Looptworks co-founder Scott Hamlin. “For each bag, 4,000 gallons of water is saved. In addition, there’s a CO2 reduction of up to 82%.”
Shown at Largo Claudio Treves 5 in Milan’s Brera district last month, the collection is an evolution of Laura Jungmann’s Product Design diploma – titled “Same, Same. But Different” and completed in 2013 – for which she reformed glass waste products.
Samesame uses new industrially-produced glassware and increases its value with traditional skills and craftsmanship.
A furniture maker is building a business from giving vintage furniture a new lease of life.
Martin Hough started his business, 23 Chairs, last year for people looking for something a bit different from the mass produced furniture from high street stores.
The 29-year-old hopes revenue from upcycling – recycling an item with improvements – will allow him to set up a workshop and create his own designs.
Mr Hough started his business in Mount Pleasant, Katesgrove, after eight years of travelling around Australia and New Zealand where he learned and honed his cabinet making and joinery skills.
He said: “I’ve been going six months properly and business is going from strength to strength.
Martin Hough, of 23 Chairs, who upcycles old furniture
“I’ve worked as a cabinet maker over the last eight years but it has always been a dream of mine to start my own business, so I’m living the dream.”
Mr Hough, who has settled in Central Reading, sells pieces at his workshop as well as at Portobello and Spitalfields markets in London and via the internet. He has also started repairing furniture to provide a steady income.
Mr Hough said: “I’m trying to cover quite a few bases. The idea originally was to set this up to finance a workshop with machinery and then start producing my own designed furniture. But setting up a workshop is so massive, it’s got to be a gradual process rather than taking out big loans.”
Mr Hough retrieves furniture from auctions and charity shops and then works his magic.
He said: “For upcycling pieces I take a vintage or retro piece of furniture and put a modern twist on it. I like mid-century design in furniture. I’m not into the Edwardian or Georgian periods but [prefer] the 50s to 70s and some war time stuff.”
He added: “I get a lot of furniture which is in a really bad state but has got some really lovely shapes and you can see that with a bit of TLC you can give it a new lease of life.”
Mr Hough created his business in a recession but the ‘make do and mend’ mentality prompted by austere times could work in his favour along with the obvious green element.
He said: “Upcycling is very much an emerging market in the UK but it hasn’t yet got the recognition it has in other parts of Europe.
The Atlas hotel chain and Tel Aviv municipality recently unveiled plans to upcycle spacious lifeguard shacks on Bograshov Beach overlooking the Mediterranean Sea into unique boutique hotels that thrust visitors directly into the city action, rather than sheltering them in a large chain hotel setting.Local designers Lilach Chitayat, Anat Safran, and Alan Chitayat have purchased the rights to initiate the Pixel Hotel project in Israel. In addition to the lifeguard shacks, this creative team hopes to establish similar projects in Jaffa Port, Neve Tzedek, and at water towers throughout the country. Tel Aviv already boasts a hot design scene, but this latest project is one of the revolutionary we’ve seen in a while.