Archive | October, 2010

Waste in the City – week 12

29 Oct

In week 12, finally my group finished all the painting work for the polystyrene boxes and now we need to come up with different arrangements for the bookshelf which provide as some options for other groups in class to decide which display style is more suitable as the final display bookshelf model. And we did several different arrangements with photograph each of the styles, which will be a record document and might be easier to show to the class with photos.


And in the afternoon lab we discussed about what should we do for the improvement proposal, and in the end we come up with the some ideas; the first one is to have a “Bio Cup Marketing Campaign” to reduce the coffee cup problems in the Union Street area. And the second major problem according to our research is lack of composting bins in the apartments property, therefore, we decided to solve this problem by build a company called “Com-partment’ which provides composting service allow the recycling of food waste for the residents in pyrmont area. And another waste problem we found in the pyrmont area is those polystyrene boxes in the fish market, however, as we already decided in the very beginning part that we will reuse those polystyrene boxes into a bookshelf, hence, our idea is to create a furniture design business and placed big recycle bins in few spots in the fish market (probably two spots) which allows fish shops or processors to put their waste polystyrene boxes in the bins and those polystyrene boxes will eventually be reused as bookshelves.


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Waste in the City – Week 11

23 Oct

In week 11’s lab, a lot of discussion happened between my group as well as with the other groups’ member. Our final idea is to use polystyrene boxes upcycling into a bookshelf. It is quite different to decide the colour scheme for those boxes, as it is required to match the colour with others’ project since our shelf is the display model for our lab. Eventually, we came out the idea to use those main solid Lego colours which included the colour of Red, Blue, Yellow, Black, Orange, Grey, Green and white. (Reference image is shows the research I did before I brought up the Lego colour scheme idea)


Our Polystyrene Boxes Colour Scheme

And after Vanessa consulted with Marie and bring up about our idea for the colour scheme, Marie suggested that it is better not use too many colours which might disturb others’ work, which this point I am also feel agree with. Therefore, in the end we decided use “Red, Blue and yellow” as our final colours and leave the insides of the boxes white which is more flexible for others to match their final models to the white colour without any interruption. Also, darlinghurst group also asked us to add up one more colour, since they mentioned that their final model might be disturb if the boxes are not in white colour (on the outside of boxes’ surface). We accepted their suggestion as well, hence, now there are gonna to be four main colours in the boxes for the shelf (Red. Blue. Yellow& White).

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Within two weeks time and we need to submit our final model also with our improvement proposal, which is pretty intensive for us. For our group, I think we are very clear about what we gonna do for our final model, but we still struggling for make an improvement idea, which I think we should concentrate on this part in the following week. Which the idea might be comes up from the major three problems within our area: 1) Lack of compost bins in residential area (apartment). 2) Waste of polystyrene boxes in fish market area. 3) A lot of disposable paper coffee cups been generated daily in the Union street area.

As our final model will be use polystyrene boxes as our main material, therefore, Marie suggested that it is good to research more information about recycle or reuse of polystyrene and a good example she shows us that there is a polystyrene model that has been reduce down to 2 % (see photo below) which is very good reference for us. That is a project that UTS is currently doing and the end items are selling to China, and it’s become the main materials for producing disposable camera’s equipments.

Polystyrene boxes reduced down into 2%






Lego colour scheme:

Brickset LEGO set guide 2010, viewed 12th October 2010, <>.

Waste in the City – week 10 (TED)

12 Oct


Today’s Lecturer Clara Vuletich, she is a Research Assistant from Textiles

Environment Design (TED) Project at the Chelsea School of Art, London. TED

research group is consisted with designers. Teachers. and researchers,

connecting curriculum developments, live project and research opportunities.

(Since 1994)

In the beginning of lecture Clara says she has never actually works in textile

industry and the most of her knowledge is comes from conceptual research. It’s

makes me even more interested about what she going to give us in her following

lecture. Her presentation is divided into four parts

v    The introduction of TED and their design strategy

v    The rise of craft

v    New technology

v    Movements

Clara mentioned about the TED’s strategies “the Lifecycle thinking”; the idea is

that every stages of lifecycle are involved with environmental impacts, and the

different options at the point of disposal have very different benefits. Which is

what TED doing which not only help themselves but also help designer to clarify

the environmental issues, and educates them aware about sustainable impact

when they designing things. TED’s mission is also helps designer to know where

to begin with, which designers might feel great complexity when they think of

the words “sustainable environment”.

These days, “design” is not just means designing something, but might involved

with many other important elements, which “the slow movement” will be a good

example, this movement was occurred around 1980s, and now the idea is using

everywhere, even in our life style- the way we live and eat. And in my opinion,

What’d TED doing is kind of using slow movement’s idea, but applied the spirit

into the design industry. Which I think is very important for all the designers

from different disciplines to know about the idea. After all, designer is design

thing for people to enjoy the better lives; therefore, the design process and

outcome should be not destructive to either people or nature environment.


Clara says she (TED) is having a workshop in Transition Towns, which is

famous since it is a zero waste town in Brixton, London. In there, they

encouraged people “reuse” stuffs, the workshop they created is teaching kids

how to reuse things such as quilting. Back to our city life, huge amount of waste

people generated daily is because we never think of our behavior could create

great impact to the environment. therefore, when thing broken we throw away,

in that way, gradually we lose our hand skills!………..

How to prove “we lose our hand skills” ??????????

the evidence can be found in our quilting workshop after Clara’s presentation,

which I found is really interested, I think apart from fashion student, the rest of

us do not have much experience to sew things. But, Sewing time is always fun,

it takes time but also is good chance to sit down and chat with people while you

also doing your “work”. After 1 and half hours, we all finished our quilting pieces,

mine is terrible which reminds me of those primary school kid’s works@..@

Waste in the city – Week 9

5 Oct

Week 9 is the first week back from the break and also we are in the half way of

this semester. This afternoon lab, we started to gathering together and

brainstorming what should we do for our group design project. I think today’s

class is quite important since we need to make a final decision for our design

project. But unfortunately our group missing two important members today, it

caused some difficulties for further developing the ideas in the beginning of our

discussion period. However, the good thing is our group identified the three

main waste problems within the Pyrmont area two weeks ago when the visual

map has been designed. Those three main waste problems are now can help us

to decide which direction should we go with.

These is the 3 main waste issues in the Pyrmont:

  1. Take away coffee cups (café; restaurant)
  2. Polystyrene boxes (in the fish market area)
  3. Lack of compost bin at the residential property

And after we discussed with tutor, we decided to choose polystyrene boxes as the

re-design item for our group project. But the problem is, we unsure where is

those boxes come from; is from fish supplier or from the fish shop?

The characteristic of polystyrene box are light and can keep the temperature,

but also it is easy to break and difficult to wash. Hence, if we can create a new

box which reinforce the hardness of the surface but still keep its merits that

might be good as a new environmental friendly product. But, the problem is how

can we find the materials; also, the cost might end up become too expensive.

During the brainstorming, three of us are toward the direction of re-design box.

Although, in the end we choose to go some alternative ways since the most of the

polystyrene boxes they (The fish market shop’s staffs) discard in the bins might

come from fish supplier not those fish shops themselves (Through some pictures

I took when I did the waste research in the fish market, the surface of

polystyrene boxes shows the name of the company which some of them are fish

supplier firm and the firm might be not from Sydney; one of the box I found in

my picture shows the company is from Tasmania which is accord with the

reason they need to use the polystyrene boxes to keep the temperature down in

order to keep the sea food fresh in the deliver process) Therefore, we assume

that the supplier would not willing to buy boxes which cost a lot more than the

normal polystyrene box which they using at the moment, moreover, that is why

those shops in the fish market they don’t care about reuse those polystyrene

boxes since they will receive more boxes every time when they purchase

something from fish suppliers. (According to my interview survey toward 3 fish

shops’ manager or owner, the result indicates that the most of shops do not

recycle or reuse polystyrene boxes)

For the alternative ways- we thinks it will be good that if we can “reuse” those

polystyrene boxes which been discarded in the fish market area. Vanessa, she

raised a really good thought, which is re-using those boxes and makes them

become bookshelf. As the polystyrene (in the fish market) is very light plus in

rectangle shapes with similar size, hence, it can be moved and rearranged into

different shape shelf to fit into the space.  Cheerful : ) ….Seems this idea is

workable, also, the bookshelf model might be stand out for our lab in the final

exhibition. However, back to reality: ( . Now, we need to start to collect the

polystyrene boxes from the fish market; problems might occur since it might be

need some permission for collecting those “waste”. Hence, we might need to

contact with the fish market committee or shop owner to see how many box they

able donate to us for our project. Additionally, as Lizzie suggested our

polystyrene boxes could also be use as a concept, not necessary to build up a

certain model (bookshelf). Thus, from now I think we need to works on what is

the most proper way to “re-use” our polystyrene boxes. Besides, Vanessa will go

to check the exhibition room this Friday with Lizzie, and after that we might

more clearly about the space of exhibition room, which will be easier for

planning the structure of our design.

HUON company website-Huon Aqua 2008, Huon premium Tasmanian salmon, viewed 5th October 2010, <;.