Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Bags to Boxes

With the holidays coming up, and little money in our pockets, gift wrapping is the last thing on your list when it comes to holiday shopping. It's always nice to get a beautifully wrapped gift, but after tearing apart the wrapping to get to that curious gift inside, what happens to it? Well, as much of half of the 85 million tons of paper products Americans consume every year go toward packaging, wrapping and decorationg goods. And what about all those shopping bags you collected while shopping? 14 billion pounds of them are collecting in landfills every year! Why waste the money and toss out all that plastic? Why not use this overly wasted material to create an equally wasted product? Well we did! Now we can't talk all of the credit...

Plastic grocery and shopping bags are rarely excepted by recycling centers so theres a lot of repurposing out there. There's a growing trend of "crocheting" plastic bags into hats, bags, even scarves! Since this has been done before, we wanted to take the manipulations of plastic bags further. How could we created a durable, heavyweight material out of bags? With the help of "Green, Grown and Sexy", we started experimenting.

Our final textile was one that is still recognizable in its original form, yet innovative and visually appealing. Our main focus was to let the process and material define the design, something one of our inspirations, Jaime Salm (MIO) calls "eco-centric process". We chose a neutral, earthy color palete to offset the man-made look of the plastic and bring an organic feel to the boxes. We also knew in the final design presentation that we wanted to accesorize our boxes with natural elements of the earth that reflect the holiday.