Tranglass is one of our favorite recycled-design projects of all time. Contradicting the old notion that recycling in design equals handicrafts made from buttons and popsicle sticks, the Transglass project proves once and for all that the efficient reuse of waste materials can go hand in hand with haute design. Designers Tord Boontje and Emma Woffenden have created a gorgeous line of tableware from recycled wine and beer bottles from the restaurant industry. Tumblers, vases, and carafes are all fashioned through collecting, cleaning and re-cutting old glassware into new shapes.
Best of all, although Transglass is already recognized worldwide as a design classic, its Guatemalan fair-trade manufacturing process allows the glassware to be produced at a low cost, keeping retail prices surprising affordable. So, even though TranSglass is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art, you can still purchase some of your own for under $30, and know that your money is supporting independent artisans in Guatemala. Eco-friendly, fair-trade, beautiful, and affordable—could it get any better than this? We don’t think so.