Recycle: treat waste to reintroduce materials that made up a similar end-of-life product or manufacturing residues into the product’s production cycle.
This initial definition of recycling does not account for the ingenuity and scope of possible reuse.
We know all polar fleece pullovers from old plastic bottles, but what we do now with old tires goes well beyond traditional recycling.
In the era of the car, more than three hundred billion tires are produced each year, and they have to be replaced very regularly. The first wave of “recycling” is made simply by exporting to Third World countries, often less demanding in terms of safety, but at one time when another, the tire becomes really too smooth to ride. How to get rid of it?
The first set of possibilities will be to use them as a forestay, backfill or construction accessory. But we go further today by producing deco and fashion items with old tires, which have the advantage of being both ecological, practical and seductive.
The tires are, of course, thoroughly cleaned, disinfected (even if they run on the ground, they are not very clean), and then, according to their condition, sorted, to be used “almost whole” the tire settee showed at the top of the page), or be stripped of rubber, which will then be used alone.
Recycled tire laminate, according to the treatment, has the appearance of a kind of big rough leather, or a kind of very rustic ceramic, that would have been painted black. When preparing the material, it is possible to leave the streaks and the marks clearly visible, or, on the contrary, to smooth it, by making the most of them.
In this case, one really approaches the aspect of a leather. It can be assembled with large contrasting stitching, for a truly “do it yourself” state of mind, or worked with more refinement.
Baskets, buckets, and storage
They were, with the bags, the very first use of recycled tires. Solid, waterproof, resistant to cold and heat, able to withstand heavy traction, they have become pots or baskets. Their material goes perfectly well with the logs still covered with bark or the small wood ready to fire.
In cache-pots, they are discreet on terraces and balconies, perfectly waterproof, and much lighter than earthen pot covers. In addition, rubber is a good thermal insulation, so it is better for your plants than zinc pots that will concentrate the cold in winter and heat in summer.
The “pot” in recycled tires was then emancipated: from pot-holster, it becomes a handy pot, laundry basket (resists very well to the humidity of bathrooms and laundries), see shopping bags.
You can even see that the recycled tire works perfectly with rustic fabrics, as in the laundry basket above, or on the Reifen Sofa which is presented below.
The fashion is with large contrasting stitching in white, and with metal fasteners, the rubber will take reflections of different colors depending on the treatment.
There are also colored rubbers … but we do not like, we do not show!
The Tired Lounge
The ‘Tired Lounge’ is a unique work, created in 2010 by Leo Kempf, an American designer. The furniture line, with its two large birch curve uprights, and the two “feet” set back inside, which give a fluttering impression, is very beautiful.
We particularly like the contrast between the white and smooth wood, which is hardly visible, and the large braided rubber straps.
Unfortunately published as a single copy, this piece has already found a buyer … but it can give you ideas if you are a green handyman!
The Reifen Sofa
The “Reifen Sofa” (or “tires sofa”) is an old-fashioned work, created by a group of German ecologists at a time when recycling was far from fashionable. It is part of a movement of global questioning of the civilization of the “all auto”, following the oil shock of 1973.
Considered one of the most important pieces of German design, the Reifen Sofa is now on display at the Neues Museum in Nuremberg. The leader of the Des-in group, Jochen Gros, is currently working on the analysis of icons, typography, and what he calls “visual grammar”.
Elsewhere in the world, the furniture is re-appropriated in recycled tires. The craftsmen have often begun to work for companies that sold this funny furniture in France or in Europe.
But it did not take long to convince them of the many benefits of this material. They then began to recreate furniture for them, adapting them according to the forms they appreciated and the scenery they are used to.
This is how this strange Aladdin Chest was born, with a real form of pirate chest, or companion of Ali Baba, small cuts that decorate the surface, reinforcing and exploiting the marks of the tires, but especially discovering, in a curious way, the traditional decorative motifs of the Berbers.