Upcycling paper into new wood : Newspaperwood

Sometimes you need to see something twice before you really see it. This happened to me when I was in my favourite concept store Friday Next, in Amsterdam the other day.

Wood made out of newspapersCabinet made from Newspaperwood


At first I saw a nice little cupboard by Breg Hansen, it had nice wooden planks with a rather specific type of wood print. Then my eye was caught by a newspaper lying close to it, I opened it and then I realised that the wooden planks were in fact made from newspapers. Being a designer and the son of a newspaper journalist I was instantly intrigued with the material.

This is the story in short: In a design project at the Design Academy Mieke Meijer created a way to turn unsold or misprinted newspapers into a renewed material: NewspaperWood. It is an upcycling process of paper back into wood. Basically, newspapers are glued together with a sustainable glue (free of plasticizers and solvents) and become paper logs. The logs can than be processed like normal wood. So you can saw it into planks, or mill it or do with it whatever you normally like doing with wood.

Sawing Newspaperwood

In a close cooperation with designlabel Vij5, the material was improved and beautiful peaces of furniture were created over the last couple of years. Nice example: Tessa Kuyvenhoven’s wood turned stool with pine wood core.

Turned stool made of Newspaperwood

And here is the great part: if there would be an end-of-life situation (God forbid) to the furniture, all the NewspaperWood can be recycled into new paper. As is visualized in this picture.

Newspaperwood recycling loop


Source: designlabel Vij5

See it: Friday Next


Written by Jop Timmers

Jop is the founder of Design for Good, experienced product designer, innovation manager, author, sustainability expert, was trained as a C2C design consultant in 2009 and was a part time product design teacher for 9 years. He is passionate about sustainable and social innovation.

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