Photos: Courtesy of Louis Rigano.
We've seen plenty of things with fused plastic bags, one of the best being the Chilean plastic bags boots we featured last year. However, few look like something that you would wear or that can be easily done. Until now.This pair of funky yet great looking rain boots was designed by student Louie Rigano for a project at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence. The goal was to make easy-to-replicate products with a material produced with fused plastic bags, so that the collective Waste for Life could teach to produce them to cartoneros in Argentina.
Cartoneros are poor people that live out of trash collection, and the main materials that they gather are paper and plastic bags. To make use of these materials, a research center that works with them has developed a hot press to compress the plastic bags into a sheet, which can be used to make different products.
For this design, the student added a layer of cheesecloth to the plastic bags, which allowed the plastic to be stitched.
His and his classmates' designs will be taken to cartoneros for them to consider production and selling here in Argentina.
The students on the class also worked in the design of a new hot press, which was also shared with collectives in Buenos Aires for them to build their own.
Leaving the project aside, the rain boots look really simple to make, and really cool, which could make them actually profitable if done by cartoneros.
At Rigano's site there's a pattern, so you may give it a try, though it should be scaled first.