Are Bags-Revolt Lamps a Bright Idea?
Lamps made by Up-Cycling Plastic Bags, FOOD Packaging Material, Clothes, Furniture, anything PLASTIC consumed by the hungry masses. Lamps made from the leftovers of our consumerist driven societies across the globe. Plastic that is filling our landfills, Oceans, Rivers and Forests. Mountains of garbage are causing grave environmental problems that people are willing to ignore. BagsRevolt lets creativity flow by Playing with “Trash”. It is inspired by the colors, shapes and texture of the waste materials by combining techniques as ancient as Weaving or modern like Fused. Its aim is to create a practical solution that would make Up-Cycling a sustainable business. It has the potential to be reproduced anywhere on earth and with people willing to create and work together to the change the world. It’s an act of Love for the planet and future generations. It’s a Statement to bring attention, create awareness and Inspire others to Act!
How did this Bright Idea get into my Mind?
The beginning was a series of events that some would called Synchronicity; others, coincidences, and most would not even notice or relate. One of our lights went out while we where having dinner with a good friend at our house. I changed it and was about to put the burned bulb it the recycling bin, when I notice the object, and wondered as usual, does it get recycle? We started taking pictures to remember our special dinner, and I thought it was a great idea to literally take a picture me holding the light bulb above my head, with one of my Art pieces in the background. I know it has been done many times, but like I told Mani, that does not make it a bad idea! Rob took the following picture. I look so bad that I decided to Tweak it a bit, and show it anyway, for the purpose of illustrating my story.
The next day surfing the web for inspiration and food for my brain, I ended up in Inhabitat, a great Online Magazine that promotes Green Designs.
Their Motto is Green Design is Good Design. “ We believe that all design should be inherently “Green”. Good design is not about color, style or trends – but instead about thoughtfully considering the user, the experience, the social context and the impact of an object on the surrounding environment. No design can be considered good design unless it at least attempts to address some of these concerns.” .
They where Announcing… Inhabitat teamed up with lighting brand Philips to launch the first ever Bright Ideas Lighting Design Competition!
I my mind the two events clicked together and felt like a message from my subconscious to act. Following my intuition and a desire I had been carrying around for a long time to make a proper lamp, I decided I wanted to submit a BagsRevolt Lamp to the competition! I had many times admired the way plastic bags have a translucent effect. I LOVE THE WAY THEY REFLECT LIGHT!
This Lamp Is a complete Up-Cycling project! I Took my old paper lamp, made a new lamp Shade With the woven cloth made with Plastic Bag and Food Packaging Material, measured, cut and glued the cloth to the old frame.
I also experimented with adding some other PLASTIC elements like Straws and Rubber bands.
Voila I I love the way the Lamp looks! It really adds more character to my studio! Since maybe the two Plastic fish are not enough?
I Then I wanted to make another version where the whole structure of the lamp was made from Recycled Materials. I have been Saving my Plastic containers, ah oh my God they reproduce so quickly! I wanted to make a lamp where the whole structure was made with Up-Cycled PLASTIC!
I headed to Bunnings (Australian Equivalent of US Home Depot, and Venezuela EPA) to buy material. By the way, I have to give a ShoutOut to this store because Bunnings DOES NOT give their customers Plastic Bags! If you check out their website , you can see that they are thinking about Sustainability! Good For them and for Australia!
I went on the Internet and found a tutorial on how to make lamps. I Made a list of the materials, with no idea what they where, or even how to pronounce them, and of course the Famous Philips LED Light Bulb that I was suppose to promote. In a perfect world where everything is simple, I would have returned home with my new Philips LED light bulb and my DYU lamp starters kit. It did not happen as planed, after 3 visits to Bunnings, Finally a very nice Young lady from the lighting department explained to me that:
1.LED technology is pretty recent and not really out there yet for the general public, or at least no in the Old traditional light bulbs form, that most old lamps use. Bunnings the largest retail store and most popular warehouse for Australia do not carry these Philips LED Light Bulbs!
2. No such thing a a Lamp Starters Kit either! And they don’t sell the parts to make lamps, so I was suggested to go to a Store where they sold LIGHTS.
I ended up spending $23 in a lighting Store, for the socket and a cord plug, to make my own lamp. I bought them mainly because the guy who was helping me out was so nice and patient answering all my questions. I was embarrassed to walk away. But I think I could have gotten the same stuff so much cheaper by re-using and old lamp that I could have bought at my recycling center or Salvation Army. I left the store feeling guilty about buying something new that was also Plastic! Well at least I helped the guy to sell something, right?
To be honest, I am still in the creative process of building my own lamp from scratch! It’s hasn’t been easy and I am not yet satisfied with what is coming out aesthetically speaking. It still looks like a craft for a school project. I would like to use my yogurt containers, PET Bottles, Lids, etc. For the base, I need a material that is heavy enough so the lamp does not topple over. I have been using the leftover of my plastic bags and food packaging but it is not heavy enough! I need to add weight to it. Well if there are any ideas out there that you want to share, please do! This is one of my continuing projects that I will keep you Posted on!
Oh and by the way, the first Paragraph of this post is the 500 Characters I was allowed to use in the description of the LAMP BagsRevolt submitted For the Bright Ideas Competition!