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This remarkable work of recycling reverses a few common practices when it comes to the building process. First, it started with reuse rather than design: the architects of Dutch firm 2012 Architecten sought scraps before deciding what the structure should look like.

Second, it does not take on ‘trash chic’ look of its materials, instead sporting a contemporary appearance built on ‘superuse’ that lowers transportation and construction costs as well as environmental impact. Steel framework from a local textile mill blends innocently into the background on the inside, while weathered wooden cladding on the exterior gives a naturally-aged appearance.

Using a combination of Google Maps and local contacts, the designers and clients scoured areas within a few square miles to find scrapyards, unofficial junk piles, strange surplus trash and more – they also polled friends, family and colleagues to collect parts like broken umbrellas and busted billboards.

In the end, the finished house is mostly made up of recycled material, each element analyzed then fit into an evolving layout. This is not to say that the feel and look of the place is secondary, simply that it grew out of what was at hand rather than an overarching objective design idea. The residence accommodates client needs for high ceilings and large walls surfaces for displaying modern art, but was built around what could be harvested from the region as well. (via Dwell – images by Mark Saleen)