Skip to content
Shelfing piece called “Hylla”

A good fit: Furniture designers choose aluminium

February 17, 2021

Did you know that up to 80% of a product’s environmental footprint is decided in the design phase?* That means designers have the power to create a more circular economy.

By designing for recycling already at the drawing board, choosing renewable materials such as aluminium and considering how the product can be taken apart and go back into the loop after its lifetime, designers can truly make a difference.

By designing for recycling already at the drawing board, choosing renewable materials such as aluminium and considering how the product can be taken apart and go back into the loop after its lifetime, designers can truly make a difference.

Let’s have a closer look at some of the collaborations between Hydro and up-and-coming Norwegian designers that were developed for the exhibition Norwegian Presence.

Øyvind Wyller and Håvard Dybwad, Norwegian designers, were looking for a material with a small carbon footprint, that was light, strong, elegant and not least, recyclable. They found Hydro CIRCAL, which has a minimum of 75% post-consumer recycled aluminium.

Their idea for a coffee table with a timeless design and an aluminium frame made of extrusions, and that’s where Hydro and Hydro CIRCAL entered the picture.

“It was a great collaboration,” Wyller says of working with Hydro. Dybwad adds, “It’s environmentally friendly, light, stable.”

This video showcases their product and their work with Hydro.

Stine Sofie Fevang and Tiange Wang created a shelfing piece called “Hylla,” which is Norwegian for bookshelf.  

They say the wood and aluminium work features Scandinavian design and Asian joining techniques – the parts fit together without nails or screws.

“It was important to think about the circular economy and we wanted to bring that with us in the whole design process.”

Watch this video to get their story.

What all these designers have in common is thinking about the circular economy right from the start, at the drawing board. That’s how products are conceived with greener energy and greener production, as with low-carbon aluminium from Hydro.

“These designs are great examples of how to make more for less, designing products from recyclable materials that has a lighter footprint, that are long lasting and can go back into the loop when no longer in use,” says Hilde Kallevig, Head of Brand and Marketing in Hydro.

“I believe this shows that the most important way to influence material selection is through the people who work with product design as they can contribute to a positive development by designing from a life-cycle perspective. I love to be able to work and interact with the people that actually have the power to change the way we produce and consume,” she says.

Do you want to learn more about the role of aluminium when designing for a circular economy? Check out our Aluminium design knowledge hub, Shapes by Hydro, for new knowledge and inspiration.

* Source: The EU Commission Circular Economy action plan

Recommended for you