Designer Woojai Lee gives old newspapers new life as furniture and building bricks. Lee’s Paper Bricks line is made from stacks of discarded periodicals recycled into benches, coffee tables and bricks with a soft-hued marble-like skin. The bricks can be stacked into any desired shape, and, according to the designer, are ‘as sturdy as real bricks’.
Paper is among the most produced and discarded materials in the world. It can be recycled, but through each cycle it loses quality as the fibers grow smaller. That’s why Eindhoven-based Korean designer Woojai Lee decided to turn discarded newspaper into a new building material instead. The project includes small tables and benches, as well as bricks that look like concrete masonry units and can be cut, milled and sanded just like regular wood.
The material is made by first turning newspaper into pulp, and then mixing it with wood glue and molding it into shape. After setting, the bricks are taken out of the molds to dry and then sanded to create smooth edges. The resulting 2-inch-thick bricks measure 4 inches wide by 11.8 inches long and boast a unique marbled look that the warmth and soft tactility of paper.
Photos by Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat, Woojai Lee and Angeline Swinkels | fotograaf