Reclaimed and Renewed

Reclaimed and Renewed

Published on Monday, July 20, 2015. This article appears in the August/September 2015 issue of American Craft Magazine.
Author Staff
Nanda Soderberg vessels

Nanda Soderberg vessels; Photo: Courtesy of the artist

EQO Optics
The standard skateboard deck, made from seven layers of Canadian maple, is engineered to withstand incredible abuse. So can it be repurposed after breaking? That’s what Ryan Vecchiarelli and Jon Winfrey wondered four years ago. Today their Colorado company upcycles boards into sunglasses with features such as Polaroid lenses and spring hinges. 

General Knot & Co.
While leading design teams at companies such as Ralph Lauren and Levi’s, Ann and Andrew Payne amassed quite a cache of rare and vintage fabrics. So it feels natural that the Bedford, New York, business the couple started together, General Knot & Co., skillfully remixes old fabric stock (sourced from around the world) into hip neckwear and functional accessories. Shown here is a combination planner/iPad case.

Nanda Soderberg
Transforming ordinary objects into artful vessels and décor is something of a mission for New Hampshire glass artist Nanda Soderberg, who says he enjoys elevating post-consumer waste as well as making art that even the students he has taught can afford.

The Base Project
With jewelry and accessories such as these Namibian landscape-inspired bracelets, twin brothers Chris and Doug Akin take a multifaceted approach to social change. The bracelet is carved out of discarded plastic pipe by members of artist cooperatives in northern Namibia. The artists are paid fair-trade wages, and a portion of profits funds other humanitarian projects, including a 42-acre community farm.

Stil Novo Design
Winemakers treasure oak barrels, often made from old-growth trees, for the virtue each one bestows on a vintage. As these characteristics leach out, however, wineries discard barrels en masse – upward of 200,000 a year. California woodworker Stefano Capaccioli and his wife, Camilla, of Stil Novo Design give the barrels another chapter by using them in custom furniture and décor.