Western Living Magazine
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Disposable utensils might just be the future of sustainable home decor.
Although Felix Böck studied wood engineering and is now doing a PhD in bamboo at UBC, he considers himself a cabinet-maker and furniture-designer at heart. ChopValue, Böck’s recycling project that took off this past spring, turns used chopsticks into home decor pieces.After ordering sushi one night, almost a year ago, Böck and his girlfriend noticed they had been accumulating a lot of disposable chopsticks in a drawer. Instead of throwing them out, he used them as inspiration; soon he had the first prototype.“Bamboo has a very beautiful surface characteristic,” says Böck. “It’s very dense, you can paint it, you can oil it, wax it. It’s versatile.” After the participating restaurants in Kitsilano, Point Grey, Dunbar and UBC collect the used chopsticks, they’re taken to a UBC lab where they are processed and assembled. ChopValue’s first product line consists of chopstick tiles, shelves, coasters and tabletops, and will be launched at IDS Vancouver this Thursday, September 22. Their online LiKickstarter campaign offers the items at a discounted price for the next 30 days.So far, ChopValue has recycled around 650,000 chopsticks and Böck plans on expanding to all major neighbourhoods in Metro Vancouver. Who thought chopsticks could end up on your wall?