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Tamara Orjola found a solution to the billions of pine tree needles that go wasted: she recycles them, creating resistant fibers for furniture and carpets.
Tamara Orjola researched the potential reuse of the billions of pine tree needles that go wasted, creating a series of ecological stools and carpets. With standard manufacturing techniques – crushing, soaking, steaming, carding, binding and pressing – they can be transformed into textiles, composites and paper, extracting essential oil and dye along the process.
Pine trees are the world’s main source of timber. Every year 600 million pine trees are cut down in the EU only, but there is more to the tree than just wood: pine needles account for 20 to 30 percent of its mass, so they turn to be a good alternative for all kinds of fibers.
“I have found that when treated, the needles, which are composed of cellulose and lignin, can be used in paper, textiles and a composite material for industry: a good alternative for imported plant fibers like coir and cotton”, Tamara explains. “My material experimentation ends in tactile products like stools and mats that communicate about the potential of materials currently discarded by industrial production.”