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Giving New Life to Abandoned Objects

Three designers from three different countries come together to work on one idea, and multiple creations.

Giving New Life to Abandoned Objects


May 7th, 2013

Giving New Life to Abandoned Objects, held from 25 April to 11 May 2013, is the brainchild of Frank Chen, an interior designer from Singapore. The exhibition is organised by F2D – formerly Frank’s interior design firm and now a product design studio that focuses on collaboration with local and overseas designers.


F2D’s first exhibition is the result of two serendipitous meetings that Frank had, one with Hong Kong product designer Kevin Cheung at Business of Design Week in 2010, and another with Australia-based designer Kasia Jarosz during Saturday in Design Sydney in 2009.


Fa-brick Sofa, a collaboration between Frank and Kasia. Here, unwanted fabric samples and offcuts donated by Kvadrat Maharam Australia are used to give a discarded sofa new life

Frank shares that a passion for design and a keen interest in collaboration is what unites them, and explains that the ‘sustainability’ theme for the project was inspired by Kevin and Kasia’s work.

“Kevin’s products, which are about up-cycling, are really inspiring. And Kasia has been involved in several Green Mark interior projects in Australia and is also very fascinated by how old objects can be made into new products creatively,” says Frank.


Another collaboration between Kasia and Frank, Ventilamp is a lampshade made from a fan grille and discontinued and unwanted laminate sample chips

In Giving New Life to Abandoned Objects, Kasia and Kevin present their individual works, as well as projects done in collaboration with Frank, with the aim of offering new perspectives on recycling, reusing and reviving products. We find out more.



Up-cycled Jewellery by Kasia


You have presented several ideas here, but we have to say, we’re particularly drawn to your Up-cycled Jewellery and Eco-awareness Placemats. Can you elaborate on these projects?

The jewellery I create is made from up-cycled parts of old electronic equipment, offcuts from metals and unwanted material samples. I carefully select colours and textures, then combine them with handcrafted elements. All ideas are influenced by my memories of the industrial Polish city where I used to live, Szczecin.

The placemats and coasters are made from offcuts of woven vinyl flooring (Bolon) donated by The Andrews Group from Australia. With shapes based on industrial and ecological themes, the placemats are a daily reminder to inspire people to live their lives in a sustainable way.


Eco-awareness Placemats by Kasia

What sort of response have you received to your exhibited work thus far?

I don’t think our collaboration expected this event to be such a great success. I had many people and online retailers inquiring about my products. Additionally, I have been offered to showcase my up-cycled jewellery collection in Europe. There was an amazing response from designers, design organisations and most importantly from design students and their teachers. 


Boombottle by Kevin is a portable speaker system with an LED light


How did the idea for the Boombottle come about?

I was working on a traditional speaker project when I came across a discarded plastic bottle. Realising a normal speaker enclosure and that plastic bottle both measure the internal volume in ‘litres’, I decided to try putting the speaker components into that plastic bottle and it sounded surprisingly good!

The first in production version was launched at the end of 2011. They are made by local NGO workers with disabilities.


A larger version of Boombottle and made from a discarded giant plastic water tank, Boomtable is a collaboration between Kevin and Frank that combines the function of a table, a speaker, mood light and power extension

What made you decide to collaborate with Frank on this exhibition?

Although we come from different design fields, we both share a great passion for design and what we do for our customers. We are constantly exploring different possibilities and connecting the dots [to generate new ideas]. For example, when we saw a huge water container, Frank thought of a table and I saw a speaker. When an idea is sparked, we can’t help but want to bring it to life!


Feltlike by Kevin is made from reclaimed felt carpet collected from the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre

Giving New Life to Abandoned Objects is held from 25 April – 11 May 2013 at 62 Circular Road, #02-01. Hours: Mon – Thur, 11am – 3pm; Fri, 11am – 7pm; Sat & Sun, 12 – 3pm.

Frank Chen

Kasia Jarosz

Kevin Cheung

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