- 8:47 am - Thu, Apr 11, 2013
- 1,531 notes
19-year-old Boyan Slat has unveiled plans to create an Ocean Cleanup Array that could remove 7,250,000 tons of plastic waste from the world’s oceans. The device consists of an anchored network of floating booms and processing platforms that could be dispatched to garbage patches around the world. Instead of moving through the ocean, the array would span the radius of a garbage patch, acting as a giant funnel. The angle of the booms would force plastic in the direction of the platforms, where it would be separated from plankton, filtered and stored for recycling.
Also on the ocean-garbage front: We’ve covered various responses to the Pacific Garbage Patch, here, and here.
- 9:58 am - Wed, Apr 10, 2013
- 236 notes
With a Department of Energy grant, Raleigh, N.C. has been using about 40 so-called Big Belly cans: “Large, solar-powered” public trash bins that “automatically compact trash and recyclables, and … send workers an email when they’re full.”
The cans cost about $7,000 each, said Bianca Howard, a community education specialist with the city’s Solid Waste Services department. But they ultimately save taxpayers money because they need to be collected less often, she said.
During the pilot program, the city replaced 32 traditional open-top cans along Fayetteville Street with 10 Big Belly stations and reduced costs from $40,903 to $1,607 for the year. In the Glenwood South area, collection costs were decreased from $12,056 annually to $115.
Via: High-tech trash cans cut costs in downtown Raleigh :: WRAL.com
- 9:34 am - Tue, Apr 9, 2013
- 128 notes
Trying to figure out what to do with old jeans normally ends in one conclusion – throw them away. This results in a lot of wasted material, which is exactly why Nudie Jeans has decided to start doing things differently. They are taking worn-out jeans and turning them into rugs.
The idea of a rug made out of other people’s jeans could be off putting for some, but the denim is cleaned and processed beforehand. More importantly the rugs look pretty cool and are a much better use of the old material than taking up space in a landfill.
(via Luxury Denim Brand Turns Old Jeans Into New Rugs - PSFK - PSFK)
Some past denim-reuse efforts from the Unconsumption archives, here.
- 10:09 am - Mon, Apr 8, 2013
- 77 notes
An Australian design firm worked with a publisher to start redesigning book covers: now, the dust jacket of some new novels in Australia can be flipped around, bent around the book, and sealed to be sent to a nonprofit that gives books to the homeless. The design is flexible, so it can easily be adapted for different book sizes and edited to include a different nonprofit’s address in the region where the books are sold.
More, including a video, here: A Dust Jacket That Transforms into a Shipping Box to Donate Used Books | Australia on GOOD
- 5:12 pm - Fri, Apr 5, 2013
- 146 notes
It’s wine o’clock (somewhere), so time to share an adult beverage-related repurposing find.
Today, it’s Champagne corks used as bike handlebar caps. (photo by Jon Heslop)
For earlier items in Unconsumption’s wine o’clock series, check out the archive here.
- 10:31 am
- 49 notes
Okay, this silly but it’s Friday, and I feel compelled to note “what’s easily the most creative (and nuttier) adaptive re-use project we’ve seen,” as one observer puts it:
The Attendant in London converts a Victorian-era public lavatory into a posh new cafe. [It] preserves the erstwhile loo’s period urinals, produced by Doulton & Co. in 1890, which were cleaned (duh) and polished to a sparkling white finish. A long wooden plank was wedged into the upper halves of the urinals to create continuous table space along the back wall. The urinal walls function as table partitions, while the banquette showcases their surprisingly plastic forms.
Aside from the sculptural toilets, the original tiling on the floors and walls were also restored.
Final judgment: “surreal and more than a little gross.”
Agreed. But still.
(via At This Cafe, Drink Coffee Alongside Period-Perfect Urinals - Eating Pretty - Curbed National)
- 7:22 pm - Thu, Apr 4, 2013
- 581 notes
Cup of tea, anyone?
Some 3,000 tea bags (yes, you read that right!) make up this installation at Rolling Greens, a “home and garden destination” in Los Angeles. (Spotted on Pinterest here. Source: Los Angeles, I’m Yours, which features additional photos.)
See also: Quilt made from steeped tea bags.
How would you describe this example of repurposing? Beautiful? Or not your cup of tea?
- 10:44 am
- 180 notes
DIY idea du jour:
Recover worn furniture with used paint sticks. Colorful and rustic looking, for sure.
To help in gathering sticks, tell your neighbors you’re collecting sticks. Also, ask staff at a store that sells paint to keep their used sticks for you.
(Photo by matangi.etsy on Flickr; spotted on Pinterest here.)