Bioplastics can be made of many different materials, but furniture made of fishing nets? That’s the vision of the Kelp Collection from Interesting Times Gang. They introduced a vision of what’s possible with large-scale, 3D-printed furniture made from recycled fishing nets.

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A man holding a green fish net over two green chairs

“Human existence is deeply dependent on our oceans and their lifeforms,” the designers said. “Yet every year, thousands of fishing nets are discarded into the depths of the Baltic Sea and the surrounding bodies of water. These ghost nets continue to cause death and destruction for fish and sea life for decades afterwards.”

Related: Startup is developing kelp farms in the open ocean to make carbon-neutral biofuel

An up-close photo of green net tossed over a green chair

However, what happens if these nets stay out of the ocean and instead become a resource for creating new products? Interesting Times Gang created a material out of recycled fishing nets and wood fiber to create 3D-printed chair designs. These products stay within the same material ecosystem once they reach the end of their life cycle. Additionally, they can be ground down to create new upcycled biomaterials.

Two green chairs

The closed design loop means that fishing nets, instead of contributing to ocean garbage patches and ensnaring marine life, are sources of renewable materials for consumer products. Kelp Collection’s design is visually inspired by biomimicry. It features organic waving lines and the swaying silhouettes of kelp and seaweed.

Left to right: An image of two green chairs with one of them with a green fishing net over it. The photo on the right is the back of the green chair with a fishing net thrown over it

Furthermore, the furniture for the Kelp Collection was originally commissioned by two-star Michelin chefs Niclas Jonsson and Daniel Hoglander. Designed for their new venture Black Milk Sushi, located in Stockholm and planned to open Spring 2022, the new furniture lends a whimsical and organic sustainable flare to the new restaurant.

A single green chair

Moreover, large swaths of underwater kelp forests have been eradicated by unsustainable fishing practices and rising ocean temperatures. Kelp helps remove as much CO2 per hectare as 20 hectares of trees. By bringing awareness to the value of kelp and underwater ecosystems, the designers and restaurateurs hope to lend toward sustainable solutions.

The Kelp Chair will also be featured in the Stockholm Furniture and Light Fairs exhibition called “Around the corner.” It highlights a circular inspiration exhibition presenting a selection of cross-industry innovations.

+ Interesting Times Gang

Images via Interesting Times Gang