Face Masks Can Be Recycled to Create Stronger Concrete

New research published in Materials Letters announced that scientists at Washington State University found a way to recycle face masks by incorporating them into concrete, creating a more durable material that is 50% stronger than the standard. As face masks generate plastic pollution and concrete engenders a carbon-intensive process, the study not only improves concrete’s design, it also addresses two sustainability issues. Researchers found that …

A Sneaker That Grows Edible Plants

From New York-based independent material designer Stella Harry Lee, the Mircogreen Shoe is a prototype sneaker that sprouts edible plants from its bacterial-grown synthetic material. The project consists of crocheted shoe uppers, which have successfully grown radishes and lettuce seeds through everyday use and exposure. While compelling and vibrant, the sneakers also conjure a dystopian future, where climate change has decimated factories and resources and …

The 30th Anniversary of Jane Atfield’s RCP2 Chair Celebrates Possibility in Sustainable Design

An exhibit at Emma Scully Gallery commemorates the first designer to craft furniture from recycled plastics

When Jane Atfield first released the iconic RCP2 Chair in 1992, she dared to use design as a response to climate change and consumer culture. As the first piece of furniture made exclusively from post-consumer recycled plastics, the chair revolutionized the design industry, creating new paradigms for how things are made—and reused. From new seats made from mushroom leather to Herman Miller‘s Aeron Chair made …