An old rusty bicycle becomes a perfect prop for baskets of flowers. I saw this at a restaurant in Ponte Milvio, in north Rome and was charmed by it. Often what is old and rusty and no longer of utilitarian value takes on a new function of beauty. Old wheelbarrows, old shutters and doors, and now an old bicycle.
This old window shutter is used in Italy on the inside of the window to close at night to block out light, and during the day to keep the room cooler. A coffee bar in the Monti area of Rome has recycled the shutter, hinge and all, to use as a table. It's narrow and so it doesn't take up much space; perfect for a crowded coffee bar.
I love collecting wine bottle corks and display them throughout Flavor of Italy in recycled glass containers. Each cork is different and brings back to memory a pleasant wine drinking experience. So I'm always fascinated when I see what others do with their recycled corks. A restaurant in Todi, Umbria started with the metal band previously used to hold a wooden wine vat together.
They then hung it on the wall as a frame and meticulously filled it up halfway with old corks, then placed a strip of metal on top of the corks and used it as a display for wine bottles.
Have you recycled something and turned it into a thing of beauty or given it a brand new function? Leave a comment and share your innovation!