After painting the Steampunk Display Cabinet incorporating a few design ideas from +Lisa Sampson using chrome on the moulding and alternating chrome and gold on the portals, it is now looking absolutely amazing!  The lights are still to be added!  What do you think?

The rescued copper pipes I’ve used to frame each window aim to give this cabinet a tailored look, providing a ‘frame’ for the items which will be featured and lit within the cabinet. I’m housing the lighting wiring in what Lisa calls ‘the absurdly high roof’ of the cabinet. There’s always a critic 😉
I know you’ve heard me bang on time and time again about the central use of recycling and re-purposing rescued materials in my pieces and I’m still on the band wagon! What, in particular, is behind today’s rant? Well, I was hanging about with a few tradie mates (for those unfamiliar with Aussie lingo, tradie mates = tradesmen) the other day. They were lamenting the fact that the owners of the build they’re currently working on had specified that 80% of materials (excepting things like wiring) were to be recycled. The problems they found with this condition of the contract included (bu wasn’t limited to) the following:

– the need to spend time preparing the rescued/recycled materials for re-use in the project versus the much more condensed prep time required when using virgin materials
– that rescued materials inevitably need modification in order to be used
– that the ability to make mistakes and thus create wastage of rescued materials is significantly reduced due to the finite nature of the materials (i.e. you can’t just go down to the local hardware store and buy some more of the same)

Now the foregoing criticisms are true. These are some of the CONs. Bur what are the PRO’s? Here are my top 3:

– using rescued materials means that a build will always look custom-made rather than conforming to the cookie cutter variety of the same item
– recycled materials often have more interesting (and discontinued) profiles; for example, I’m particularly fond of using 1930’s and 1940’s textured glass in various projects and when I’ve gone to a specialist glazier to get something even remotely similar or even interesting, the closest alternatives looked painfully mass produced and would have had the effect of cheapening the entire creation

A glass pane from a 1940’s external door – I like to call this “The Sevens”

– more people re-using end-materials (eg. copper) means that the volume of production processes (such as extracting the average of 2% copper from sulfide ores via smelting) drops which – given the pollution and wastage produced – is a great thing for the environment

We only have one habitable plant (that we know of at this stage, anyway!)

Cheers and I hope to see you drop by again.