Designer Uses 100 Percent Recycled Glass in Furniture

Green Grove Design has found a new use for recycled glass bottles. Based in Rochester, N.Y., the company is taking all sorts of colored glass and making a variety of home furnishings, from tables to sculptures.

Robal Glass can feature as much as 82 percent recycled content by weight. It is available in nine different colors, which provide a finished look similar to mixed glass cullet.

Green Grove Design's table made of Robal Glass, 100 percent recycled glass in soy-based resin. Photo:

Green Grove Design's table made of Robal Glass, 100 percent recycled glass in soy-based resin. Photo:

The products are created using sterilized beer, wine and liquor bottles, as well as other post-industrial glass. In many cases, treated glass (such as mirrors and windows) are landfilled because the recycling process involves more steps than container glass.

Robal Glass products include interior and exterior tables, mirrors, sculptures, shower stalls and window sills.

“I’ve always been intrigued by new materials, and Robal Glass sparkles with a three-dimensional aesthetic that draws you in,” says Green Grove designer Scott Grove. “To be a part of this new venture, creating and designing beautiful pieces from what would have been industrial and consumer castoff is particularly gratifying and adds an entirely new level of cultural responsibility to my work.”

Green Grove displayed its new material at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair, held this past weekend in New York.

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Trey Granger
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  1. I have a question about using glass onsite instead of taking it to a recycling facility. I reside in a rural area, six miles from the nearest recycling center, a local Wal-Mart store. There I am able to recycle tennis shoes, plastic bags, most hard plastics and paper. At home I recycle organic waste through composting and mulching. I recycle used cat litter by throwing it along the electric utility easement which is vegetated with small trees and bushes. The area is repleat with leaves which provide a high carbon content for the cat litter. The litter itself has a deodorant which I believe may cut down or eliminate dangerous viruses and bacteria such as histoplasmosis. Bones from meat is frozen and taken to a remote area of our property for scavening by local animals.

    This leaves glass. Currently I do not take glass to any recycling center as it would require the expenditure of unacceptably large amounts of fossil fuel as the Wal-Mart facility nearby does not accept glass. A local municipality does accept but only during inconvenient hours and requires a two dollar tiping fee.

    As a result I have taken it upon myself to clean the glass and place it into a pit. This pit will someday be a recharge pit. It is formed by placing flat stones in a circular configuration four feet deep and filling it with glass along with large rock. When completed this pit will be toped with flat stones and will serve as a small patio. Fruit trees are planted nearby. I expect no leachate from this operation. This is one of eight recharge pits designed to recharge the underground aquifer, to provide rainwater harvesting in one case and to reduce outflow to the local watershed.

    But I seek a better solution to my glass problem. I want ideas so that I can convert my glass to a product without the danger of broken glass, that being sharp edges. I am now seeing colored sand made from glass cut up in a hammermill shreader. I see glass beads with no sharp edges being sold as mulch. I assume the process which creates the two safe products from a dangerous feedstock is costly.

    I seek a better solution. I seek a “hints from Heloise” method that solves the sharp edges issue for a smaller capital investment.

    As a backround let me explain that I have invested in a Compost Tumbler at just under $600.00. In a poor case senerio It will pay for itself in less than three years with the improved compost product it produces. Unlike most compost which is labor intensive or which has weed seeds not killed by the high temperatures in a sophisicated composting operation this unit solves that problem with little effort and relatively small amounts of capital invested.

    I am seeking a similar solution for sharp edged glass. It’s been suggested I take a heavy insulated stainless steel chimney segment and crush the glass with a two by four. I’ve tried this only to be discouraged by the time it takes in human energy to break the glass followed by the time it takes to sift the cullett.

    So I call on you, my fellow know it all pseudo-environmentalists and weekend freaks to come up with a solution to my dilemna. I am to a certain extent a lazy environmentalist. Or, perhaps I am an efficient environmentalist. In my travels and travails, I’ve discovered absolutely stunning solutions to seemingly impossible problems. Many a corporation has succeeded where others have failed because of one efficiency or many efficiencies whereby sophisiticated solutions stand beside “Heloise” solutions.

    I really like Heloise.

    Help me.


    Harry James Frank

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