Thinking Outside the Box: Weird and Wonderful Materials for Everyday Objects

Posted on July 16, 2012 by casepops | 0 Comments

Here at CasePops, we love thinking outside the box. So we appreciate seeing materials used in a totally new way. Here are some of the fascinating and unusual uses of materials for everyday objects, from the totally weird to the surprisingly beautiful.

Dutch designer Debbie Wijskamp has created a series of vessels made from recycled tires:

Tom Fruin created this unbelievable stained glass water tower, turning the water tower (ubiquitous in the NYC skyline), into a work of art. As discovered on Design Sponge.

Stained Glass Water Tower by Tom Fruin, 2012.

L.E.F.T. reuses bullet cases to create visually fascinating bird houses. As discovered on Design Boom.

Bullet Case Bird House by L.E.F.T., 2012

An homage to unusual materials wouldn't be complete without Lady Gaga's meat dress... and its counter part, the vegetable dress.





On to something a bit more useful and, er, subtle. Jil Sander designed a leather lunch bag, making it fashionable to bring your own lunch. As discovered on The Haute Pursuit.

Jil Sander Lunch Bag, 2012

Design student Alexander Vittouris designed a bicycle made of the highly renewable material bamboo. The major innovation? Actually growing the bamboo into the various shapes needed; piecing together the bicycle is a cinch. As discovered on Inhabitat.

The Ajiro Bamboo Bicycle by Alexander Vittouris, 2011.

Designer Ulrike Isensee makes scarves from stainless steel and Ivanka, a Hungarian concrete design company, designed a concrete clutch. As discovered on Moddea:

Stainless Steel Scarf by Ulrike Isensee, 2012.

Genezis Clutch by Ivanka, 2011.

In each case the use of an unorthodox material makes a statement.  Rubber housewares are unbreakable (drop it and it bounces?). Tom Fruin turns a normally utilitarian piece of architecture into an urban lighthouse. Jill Sander counteracts acts the dowdy look of a lunch box. L.E.F.T. juxtaposes life and death using bullets as a home for wildlife. Bamboo bicycles are home-grown and low-tech, making two-wheeled transportation accessible. Steel and concrete accessories turn construction materials into funky yet elegant fashion.  The vegetarian dress was created for a "vegetarianism is sexy" campaign in for the meat dress, well, we'll leave that one open to interpretation :)

Did we miss any awesomely unusual use of materials?  Let us know! We'd love to hear from you.

Posted in art, design, Design, fashion, Materials, Unique

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