25 May 2017 | Last updated 11:39 PM

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Juili Eklahare | Monday, 20 March 2017 AT 08:24 PM IST
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It’s easy to shop for brand-new items. But how easily can one design and create something new out of old material and scrap?
Suryadatta Institute of Design’s exhibition, Desino 2017 Expo, has students making products like clocks, show-pieces, paintings, furniture and much more out of waste such as plastic, wood, cardboard and more. With up to 20 stalls, displaying up to 200 products, there is something for everyone there. Building models made out of cardboard, dresses made out of cut out pieces of coloured paper were just some of the astonishing creations.

One of the catchy products is the abstract models which look metal-made but aren’t so in reality. “The models have been made with the idea of gifting them to someone you love or admire. We have made them from rexin plastic and fibre moulds and clay. And in order to give them a metallic look, we have used acrylic powder,” says Pooja Kad, a second year Bachelor of Design student.

Shaping the models wasn’t a simple task though, explains Mokshada Shah, another second year Bachelor of Design student. “There was a lot of trial and error and experimentation before we got the models in the right shape. We did a market survey and visited local shops and got a lot of ideas from there too. It took about three weeks to make the models, but quite a few things happened while making them. For instance, we all got allergies on our hands while using the rexin plastic. So we know that we need to be more careful while using it next time,” she recalls.

The students of first year Bachelor of Interior Designing wished to create something that one can place in their house or office in a corner, and what better than a tall structure of one of the seven wonders of the world?

The structure made by the students looks like the Eiffel Tower, no doubt, and slants perfectly on both sides, meeting at the top in the centre, like the one in Paris does. Says Hrithik Sirjoy, “We used scrap iron for the structure which we got moulded and attached beer bottles (painted and designed) to it on the surface. And getting it stand up exactly like the Eiffel Tower was the main challenge. It would often get crooked, or break and what not, until we were finally able to balance both sides.”

While many made models out of used objects, some students wanted to make something one could actually use. Following research, Tejashree Satpute and Aditi Kulkarni, both first year students of Bachelor of Science in Interior Designing, made sofas. “It didn’t take much time, and we had our sofas and table ready in three days. For the sofas, we got oil drums from an oil dealer and got them welded. As for the table, we used an old tyre and attached wooden legs to it at the bottom. And then we painted both. Also, even if we were using items like drums and tyres, we didn’t want it to look drab. So we also invested a lot of time in sketching the right design for both,” Tejashree quips.

“Getting the dimensions right for the sofas was also very important, because we needed to fit the cushions into them. We got that wrong a couple of times, but we finally got it right,” adds Aditi.

Some students had to base their products on the size of the raw material they already had. First year students of Bachelor of Interior Designing students got wood pieces of different shapes and sizes from the timber market scrap, and based on that, decided to form their final product.

They sketched the products first, trying to comprehend what they could create out of what they had. “A lot of visualisation and imagination went into it, because the raw material decided the product and not vice-versa. For example, we had three circular wooden pieces, so we thought that would make a nice Mickey Mouse clock (one circle as the face, the other two as the ears). And we painted it to give it a shine,” says Shweta Khopade, a first year student of Bachelor of Interior Designing.

Desino 2017 Expo is being held at Balgandharva Kaladalan, JM Road till March 22, 10 am - 8 pm. Entry is free

The author can be followed on Twitter @juilieklahare

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