On all of planet Earth, the most wasted material has to be paper. We all toss out barely used napkins, notes, tissues and the rest on an hourly basis.
But one designer, Woojai Lee, has developed a project to save this waste and turn it into something useful. PaperBricks is an effort to create a durable material out of recycled paper, for use in everything from furniture to construction materials.
Of course, all paper is recyclable, but it’s actually not quite that simple. Every time paper is ‘recycled’, it’s torn apart and put back together again. This process weakens the bonds between the fibers, and eventually the material becomes too weak to be useful.
But not anymore. Woojai’s goal was to find a use for this formerly worthless paper garbage, and he believes he’s created a compound that will make a difference.
“I felt that the life span of the paper was very short,” WooJai said, “and thought maybe I could do something about this.”
The PaperBricks are made from recycled newspaper, first turned into pulp before being mixed with glue. They’re then shaped into bricks, which are said to be just as strong as the traditional kind we’re all used to – except way more beautiful:
It’s been a long process getting to this point. “I was experimenting [with] different types of paper, different mixes, different ratio, different techniques of making, etc. Until I found the right formula and technique for making PaperBricks.”
That hard work should pay off, as WooJai’s vision for his creation's applications are unlimited. “My next goal with the PaperBricks is to develop it further into interior materials such as wall panels, room dividers, objects and of course more furniture series.
“I want to create my world out of PaperBricks. So keep an eye on me, there is still a lot more to come!”