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Industrial waste reused to create chic, new products

11 June 2010

Exquisite jewellery created from recycled silver has won this year’s Bricolage Design Prize.

Hobart jeweller Shauna Mayben combined 100 per cent recycled silver with perspex offcuts and old magazines to produce a range of stunning necklaces and earrings.

The annual Bricolage competition challenges Tasmanian designers to transform industrial waste destined for landfill into useful, marketable products.

Environment Protection Authority board representative Wayne Petrass said the entries in this year’s competition showed great innovation and helped throw the sustainability spotlight on industrial waste streams.

“Mining precious metals has a very high environmental impact and it is essential that every effort be made to recover and reuse these finite resources,” he said.

“Shauna Mayben’s jewellery not only gives these valued commodities a second life, but lends industrial waste a chic new perspective.”

The $4000 Bricolage Major Prize was complemented by the $500 Bright Ideas Prize which encourages designers to think laterally and produce an object that could potentially be developed over time.

Mr Petrass said Ellen Rae’s winning entry featured a range of baby clothes created from woollen jumpers.

He said the 'repurposed' clothing was original and durable, and reduced demand for resources required to manufacture new material.

“This year’s Bricolage entries highlighted the use of a combination of materials to produce great designs, often with interesting results,” Mr Petrass said.

“One entry combined medium density fibreboard with used envelopes to produce fun magnets. Another used offcuts of beautiful kimono fabric with wood waste to make stylish neckpieces and another combined waste plywood with coreflute to produce contemporary lamps.

“Bricolage also attracted larger scale entries including extremely practical worm farms and compost bins submitted by a team from Kingborough Council’s yspace youth project.”

Bricolage entries are on display at the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens until 16 June. Visitors are encouraged to vote for their favourite exhibit in the People's Choice competition.

Bricolage is sponsored by the Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Cadbury, Replas and Futago.