It is no wonder that Cape Town was awarded the World Design Capital distinction for 2014, www.wdccapetown2014.com, which recognizes design as a tool for social, economic and cultural development. Whilst meandering the streets of the Cape Town suburb Observatory this week, this creative edge is evident everywhere, from the chandeliers made from spoons and teacups to the wall light that used to be an ice bucket. Upcycling began in the poorer regions as a means of earning an income where people collect everyday scrap metal such as soda cans and turn them into decorative ornamentation. These are then sold on the streets but have also made it into some main stream tourism outlets where the concept has then also been expanded. New items are expensive and so industrious small business owners need to get inventive.
The same inventive streak streams into aspects of everyday life as seen in these upcycled-tyre-swings in the local childrens playpark, and the giant ‘bottle-top’ elephant head observing the fun from the trees.
Next time I will look at the upcycled and recycled design features that run through the restaurant industry…..