The Art of Upcycling in the Shopfitting Industry
Upcycling is the art of taking something that’s old and past its best, something that’s maybe even been discarded altogether, and transforming it into something new and either beautiful, useful or both.
Upcycling differs from recycling in that the item is not broken down to its basic elements and turned into something else. Rather, it is refashioning or repurposing an item to give it another lease of life. Although the term ‘upcycling’ is a new one, the activity goes back a long way and is something human beings have always done, usually arising from a combination of necessity and creativity.
In fact, upcycling was actually much more common in the past when societies were not quite so affluent and, let’s face it, not quite so wasteful as ours. In the past, it was much more common for old curtains to be converted into new clothes, for example, or for an old door to become a new table.
In the world of shopfitting, upcycling makes perfect sense and is becoming increasingly popular for a variety of reasons:
- It really is a great way of saving money. Why buy something new when you already have a perfectly acceptable version just sitting there waiting to be repurposed?
- It’s a great way of being creative. In many ways, there is nothing more creative than taking something that’s already been created and giving it a whole new lease of life.
- It’s a great way of saving the planet. That might sound like a bit of an exaggeration, but every little helps, and if by repurposing something for another use, you’re stopping it being tossed in the landfill, then you’re definitely making a positive impact for the environment.
At Approved Shopfitting & Interiors, we are committed to both recycling and upcycling whenever it’s possible to do so. Recycling is a no-brainer and par for the course in any job. Upcycling is something fewer companies do, however, and we’re particularly proud of the efforts we make in this regard, ultimately saving clients’ money and producing some beautiful, striking features into the bargain.
What we did for Gas Street Social
At Approved, upcycling is just part of the service we offer and clients are always thrilled to see how features or fixtures and fittings that had previously been thought useless can be brought back to life.
When we were given the opportunity to take over the complete fit-out for brand new bar and restaurant Gas Street Social, we were excited to work with The Shaker Group, a company known to be great innovators and open to new ways of working. This meant that when it came to creating an urban neighbourhood kitchen inspired by Birmingham’s cultural and industrial history, we were able to use many upcycled materials, as they fitted perfectly with the venue’s industrial theme. For example, the tiling of the back bar with scaffolding boards worked beautifully and gave the venue a wholly unique feel.
If you’d be interested to see what Approved Shopfitting & Interiors could do for you, give us a call today.