There are a number of ways to recycle materials or use available natural materials without compromising visual complexity and contemporary style. A series of misshapen wooden log bowls come in surprising sizes while other sticks of all shapes can be used with clever reusable utensil tips and old glass bottles can become creative recycled glass countertops.
Lamps and lighting fixtures are another place where one can go green in offbeat ways. The recycled paper lamp designs above are far more interesting than what you will find at a normal store and are also ripe for DIY copy-cats. The strange solar lighting strategy below them is a bit cliche and postmodern but at least a great design concept.
In fact, when it comes to green furniture there are often far more interesting and dynamic options than standard off-the-shelf products – from flat-pack and biodegradable chairs that provide unusual visual interest to real growing moss bathroom mats and green vertical room dividers that change over time.
Of course, green interior design isn’t all about the finished look being green – sometimes a recycled furniture design can be engaging because of the ways in which it shows off its origins. Take the above recycled-crate-and-stick bookcase designs or the branded tag-and-logo pillows below them.
Sometimes the product itself is somehow recycled or sustainable and sometimes it is the constituent material that is most intriguing and environmentally sound. Old newspapers can be transformed into a beautifully colorful recycled paper yarn and new technologies allow for a kind of spectacular see-through concrete that is visually permeable, cutting down on the need for artificial power sources.
Though new materials are used for their construction, these two funky refrigerator concept designs look at how we use space – or fail to use it. Both the expanding fridge shown at the top and the flat-share fridge below it explore the idea of flexibility with the storage units we require (and power) on a daily basis.
On the larger scale, architects and vehicle designers are also exploring – in concept and in reality – the ways in which we travel through and occupy space. The VW van shown above is a sustainable reinvention of a classic car – an eco-friendly vehicle from the past for a greener future. Also shown are a contemporary rustic-but-environmental resort cabin that is remarkably green and an offbeat-but-brilliant idea to convert oil rigs into container-filled luxury resorts.
When people think of green design they often (somewhat strange if you think about it) consider buildings and the things inside of them but there are plenty of ways ot go green on the outside as well. Shown here are a biofuel-powered portable hot tub, a clever rainwater-reusing planter design and the now-infamous sh*t box – a reusable and collapsible outdoor commode.