I wasn’t sure to file this under green design, or an attempt at sustainable design gone bad. As we all know, Bamboo is the darling of the sustainable green movement. It grows fast, requires no pesticides, is very hard and durable, and grows just about everywhere. With that in mind, bamboo can be found in all kinds of products that are trying to be green – some, like bamboo flooring, bamboo furniture, bamboo cutting boards, etc, make sense. Some do not. That said, I present an homage to all things bamboo (green washed and all).
1. The Bamboo Laptop
The Bamboo laptop. I don’t even know where to begin, although im not sure if the laptop itself is more or less shocking than the accessories (the bamboo keyboard and the bamboo mouse). Several manufacturers have released a bamboo cased laptop, with varying degrees of actual substance (some are little more than veneers).
2. Bamboo Mountain Bike
Now this actually makes sense, but it is really weird to see a bike made out of wood. I guess it would have been just as silly to have thought of a bike made out of carbon fiber 10 years ago, but don’t those still have an internal frame of metal? Calfee Design seem to be the big pioneers in this field, and from the reviews, they are pretty sweet.[via ecoshopper]
3. Bamboo Sheets
Now this may seem odd at first, but they are incredibly well suited for this type of material. They have a real silky feel to them, are pesticide and chemical free (usually) and antimicrobial.[via apartmenttherapy]
4. Bamboo Car
I almost can’t take this seriously. To me it looks like a wicker basket on wheels, but indeed, it is a car made from bamboo. The maker was pretty eco-friendly though and decided to make it an electric car – I guess its only fitting.[via risingsunofnihon]
5. Bamboo Microscope
I’m not sure if this is because scientists are embracing eco-friendly materials, or funding is getting harder to come by. Actually its a bit of both, and a novel solution to a real problem. Usha Menon, a government researcher developed this solution for the schools of India so that children could keep up with modern science.[via nature]
6. Bamboo Houses
Once thought of as a poor mans building material, bamboo is both earthquake and wind resistant. Their strength and flexibility allow them to better deal with the stresses of earthquakes and wind pressure. Only 60-70 bamboo trees are required to build 1,000 houses whereas nearly 600 trees would be cut down for the same task. Sounds like my next house is going to be bamboo, especially if i end up moving back to California.[via greenpacks]
7. Bamboo LCD TVs/Monitors
It looks nice, in a kind of retro modern way. I can’t attest to the sustainability nature of it as it would appear to be a design touch- although it does replace plastic. If bamboo is your decor, then this may fit right in. I wonder if you can stain it?[via uberreview]
Just goes to show that if you can dream it, it can be made out of bamboo. Not all are eco-friendly or sustainable, but they are unique in their design. It’s easy to see how green washing can spread once something is labeled as ‘green’ or ‘sustainable’. Nonetheless, bamboo is a wonderful renewable resource that should be leveraged in more green design.