January students - click here for my sample DP page

Every year I run an inter-session class where the goal for each student is to create something beautiful and functional out of scrap materials that would otherwise end up in a land-fill.

We use off-cuts of wood and metal, left-overs from past projects and items that have been lying around in garages for years. Occasional dumpster-diving has been used successfully to turn up some really interesting (and free) materials, from plastic to plywood to plexiglas.

Students learn how to use hand tools, power tools and how to plan, measure, cut and join wood to make their creations. Every year I get many students who have never built anything before, and with time and patience everyone makes something they are proud of.

Below are some of the many pieces that students have made - take a look!

Helayna made this folding step-stool for herself and her mother to reach the high shelves in their kitchen.

The materials used included used 2 x 4s and a couple of plywood squares found in a dumpster.

Approximate cost $3 (for 2 x 4s & screws)


The doors on Priscilla's piece cost $1 from Ikea. The rest of the material was found.

Myah's coffee table doubles as a bookshelf. She needed it to perform both functions because of the space limitations in her room.

Zach's CD rack has blue Plexiglas shelves. Nice.

This piece started out as a table (see model on left!) but ended up as something to hang on the wall when the folding legs were found to be too unsteady.

This chair used all new materials, and cost around $60. The construction is douglas fir 2 x 4s with steel cabling to support the seat.

Reversible chair by Darci

Kit found some TRULY HORRIBLE pieces of wood that had been used as a garden walkway for years. After many hours sanding and cutting, she made this fabulous bookshelf (which ended up very close to the original concept model)

She even the metal brackets from a discarded length of angle-iron!

Cost: about 25cents for the screws.

Beth made this L.P. record holder and fitted it onto am old dresser she had. The dresser will be used as a stand for her record player (yay vinyl!!)

Hexagonal side table (2x4 & plexi) Daniel Estralla

BIG chair, by Colton Lewis

Ricky's folding DVD rack. Cost: about $6 for the extending brackets.

The eco-chair, by Jeff and Alex

Bookshelf: Particle board and steel cables. The particle board came from the dumpster, the cable and fittings cost around $15

Nicci and Scarlet paint Trent's lounger made from approx 20 feet of 2x4 off-cuts!

Occasional Table by Andy Hogan.

Another table made by Daniel Estrella

Matthew's box. Hinges: $0.99; Wood: free

Helayna's stool was pretty well built!

Not every design ends up exactly as originally planned compare this orignal design and...

...the final completed piece!

table, Stephen. Fence post & 4x4. $2.40 Stephen's first table. Fence post & 4x4s ($2.40)

Anna's mobile table with CD rack. Material cost: about $20

Zack's Guitar and Amplifier stand

Colton, Nathan and the sofa they built.

Circular table by Matthew

Lamp with fractal pattern (Phi and I together!)