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Thursday, July 2, 2020

ReMade, reuse, recycle

Two designs for sale at Ideal boutique. // Photo by Ryan Rothaus

By Donella Lalas

Making culinary products by hand seems unrealistic, but not for Western’s industrial design majors. Not only did they make their own products, they used waste to do it.

Western’s third-year industrial design majors sold their handmade products at Ideal, a design boutique downtown, at the Bellingham Art Walk on Friday, Nov. 2. Their art will continue to be on sale in the store for the next two weeks or until supplies last.

This is an event that has been put on with Ideal every year for the past 11 years. Each year, the students are given a different theme, and this year it was culinary innovations.

The store was filled with community members, friends and family in support of the industrial design students during their opening night. Proceeds will be split between Ideal and Western’s industrial design program.

Henry Dahlgren is a third-year industrial design major and works to raise funds for the Industrial Design Society of America club on campus.

“Every fall quarter, the junior class is assigned a project called ReMade,” Dahlgren said. “The goal of the project is to address sustainable design by designing and producing 20 products made of recycled materials.”

The juniors in the class began working on their projects starting on the first day of class, Dahlgren said. They used materials such as wine bottles, bike spokes, tin cans and more.

“We really hit the ground running,” he said. “It’s basically been nonstop since the first day of school.”

a group of people stand around a table holding the items the industrial design third-years made.
Members of the industrial design program as well as curious shoppers visit Ideal in Downtown Bellingham to see the culmination of weeks of work. // Photo by Ryan Rothaus

Fellow third-year industrial design major Ryan Rothaus chimed in about the project as well.

They met with their professor the week before school started, Rothaus said. Their project for the first day of school was to look for waste and bring in six materials they could use for their products.

Dahlgren himself made salt shakers using wine bottles and recycled plastic with the wine bottle as the base, he said. He melted the plastic and made it into a marble-look for the cap.

For Rothaus’ project, he used old sails to make tote bags, he said. He used a variety of sails so the bags will be lightweight and durable, and will be able to hold gallons of milk.

A few other products on display included whisks, bowls, coasters and phone stands.

The best part of the show is having a space for other people to see what they’re doing, Dahlgren said. It’s not like people can go into their studio and see what they do. This is their chance to put it out there.

Rothaus also put together a video that was shown throughout the event showing the process of making each product.

“The product is cool but the process and what goes into work behind it is really cool,” Rothaus said.

Through this project and event, the industrial design program has been able to make good relationships within the community, Dahlgren said.

“That’s a big thing that we’re trying to emphasize this year: is supporting and creating a kind of community of local businesses,” he said. “Really getting people behind our program and excited about what we’re doing.”

Jordyn Pal attended her first ever ReMade event for the first time this year.

She said it’s cool that these students actually made everything here.

There will also be another show in about a month for all classes, Dahlgren said. This upcoming show will not only include the junior class but the program as a whole.

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