We design out waste in the production of our products. In addition to this, waste materials are also used. But using up wasted resources is not the only goal we have. We also want to design products from waste that are desirable, useful and stylish. They must improve a part of your home and perform on their own merit.
You could call this thrifty, or good business. It’s obvious that creating something from nothing adds value. But it’s not easy to create a popular thing from what gets perceived as trash. After all, products do need people to use them or they are redundant and a redundant product is wasteful.
This process brings limitations. If a products identity relies on being ‘made from waste‘ you cannot conjure up more to please demand. The product is by it’s nature, a By-product’ much like straw or molasses.
Part of Being Creative
We’re driven to ‘use up’ or create uses for the waste we create in our other business, a furniture making company. We recognise the costs involved in purchasing and the raw materials and the energy it takes. We don’t like any going to waste. Finding ways to use up this waste material is also inspiring and it’s an integral part of being creative.
There are parallels in ‘nose to tail’ eating the principle is that all parts of the animal get eaten. It’s not the prized cuts of meat.
We use the same approach of material stewardship when designing new products. We aim to minimise the waste created in the manufacture and let this inform the design of a piece as it develops. A project that creates large amounts of waste that gets discarded is not desirable. This is also true of energy intensive methods of manufacturing.
Stewardship of Materials
Part of the role of the ‘Craftsman’ has been the stewardship of materials. Preserving the traditional ways of making, passing on techniques. Now, more than ever, the emphasis needs to be on making products for which there is a need. With sustainable & appropriate stewardship of raw materials.
Words by: Jonathan Thomas