The amount of waste in our society is both staggering and shockingly unnecessary. Everything from the packaging that the products we as consumers buy to the design of vehicles, phones and computers all centers around a set service life before needing to be replaced and tossed into the trash. The only persons benefiting from this "system" are the corporations profiting, those who pay the price are we the consumers and those whom will ultimately be responsible for dealing with the aftermath of this system will be our children.
Pictured here is a project I am really proud of, a railing made from old climbing rope and scrap 4x4 posts. This loft area is in a shed I built over the winter, the loft will be a play area for our children and I wanted something to clearly define the edge but still allow me to slide boxes, toys and scrap lumber into the loft as needed. I notched the old 4x4 post to sit securely on the floor and then bolted them with carriage bolts. I drilled holes at measured intervals to run the rope through and then tightened the rope. It does not budge when I put all my body weight onto it. I also have my hangboard mounted on the edge of the loft for a quick climbing workout.
While I am a sucker for anything I can repurpose, I always use new material for my fence installations and repairs. I want the fences I build and repair to last and not be disposed of a few years down the road. With this mindset, I work hard to take extra steps to prevent my gates from sagging (see blog post below about strong gates!) and maintain a picky attitude when sorting through lumber for a new installation. While its not likely that I am going to change the world anytime soon with my dumpster diving tendencies, I do hope I can inspire at least one person to think twice about what they put into the landfill and have a little fun creating something artistic and functional along the way. Pictured below is a gable window I bought from the Habitat for Humanity Restore here in Lexington. It was a $20 square window that I installed on its diagonal edge, creating a unique window that fit perfectly with the 45 degree pitch of the roof and faces east, allowing the morning sun to shine into my workshop.