Planning to reinvent your space this year? Before heading to the nearest Home Depot for a new sofa, consider taking a step towards a sustainable home. We have access to way more conscious design these days, with a rise in innovative furniture pieces that contribute to a healthier environment. From trees grown directly into chairs to concrete-style tables made out of recycled paper, plenty of eco-friendly furniture have made their way into the market, making them more accessible than ever. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, London-based designer Micaella Pedros comes up with a brilliant use for discarded plastic bottles. With her ‘Joining Bottles’ project, she creates a wood-joining technique by shrinking plastic bottles to make unique furniture pieces like chairs, shelves and lamps.
Inspired by the do-it-yourself-culture and democratic design, Pedros began her career as a social and humanitarian designer after graduating from the Royal College of Art. Delving deeper into the relationship between objects and the environment, she sought to create something out of materials readily available in cities, and give them new life as functional household items.
Pedros began the ‘Joining Bottles’ project by collecting discarded plastic bottles around London, and started to experiment with the material. Soon, she discovered that by shrinking the plastic with heat, it formed a sturdy joint that could link wooden pieces to build chairs, tables and shelves.
Re-purposing plastic isn’t a new concept, you might have even heard of the Marine Debris Bakelite project which feature beautiful tableware made 100% out of plastic sea waste. What’s unique about the ‘Joining Bottles’ project is how simple it is to do. Using a heat gun, Pedros melts the plastic while wrapping it around two wooden pieces. She adds ridges in the wood to form a stronger hold. Because both the plastic and wooden pieces are scavenged, each completed furniture piece tells a unique story, characterized by colorful joints and various textures.
With Pedros’ new wood-joining technique, she hopes to promote a dialogue across different communities, at a time when plastic and wood scraps are thrown out as waste. With a shift in perspective about how we view waste, there’s a potential to open up a whole new market in do-it-yourself sustainable furniture, and support communities with a need for resources.
So before you throw out those plastic bottles, think again, what other ways can you reuse it at home? With more and more designers like Micaella inspiring us to go green, there’s no doubt we’re headed toward a more sustainable living environment in the future.
What do you think of the ‘Joining Bottles’ technique? Is this a useful way to reduce plastic waste? Let us know if we’ve missed anything out, in the comments. Share, like, and follow us wherever your like to use social media, and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter, to receive the latest design news straight to your mailbox.