Clever design, whether environmentally friendly or not, is something that everyone can appreciate. Who doesn’t love a passport case made out of map shower curtains, or a pencil sharpener that looks like an alligator? But we think that environmentally friendly design is almost always clever by default, because it reuses existing materials in creative and inventive ways.
It’s even more creative when the materials used reflect the function of the product.
Israeli designer Erez Mulay, a graduate of the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design who develops recycled products, designs furniture, and creates ceramic and environmental sculpture, has created the cleverest wastepaper basket that we’ve ever seen. Made out of wasted paper, of course.
The basket is constructed out of thin rolls of magazine paper (which is sometimes hard to recycle due to all of the inks used) that are connected with cold adhesives that enable the ultimate recycling of the product when you’re done with it. These beautiful wastepaper baskets are made almost entirely by hand in an extremely low-tech process, meaning their production doesn’t have much of a carbon footprint.
But it gets even better. Mulay hires people with emotional disabilities to create the baskets at the Paper Work factory – a protected factory for creating unique design products out of recycled paper with locations in Ramleh and Rishon Lezion. Approximately 80 people between the ages of 20-60 work at the factory, and for many of them their work is their only chance to have a normal lifestyle.
Paper Work is part of the “Shekulo Tov” initiative (which designer Zohar Yarom and her fabric sample handbags are also a part of), which means that this simple yet clever wastepaper basket rehabilitates our natural resources while rehabilitating people’s lives as well. It is good and aesthetic all around.
To read more about environmentally conscious Israeli designers: