Skateboarding is gaining some sustainable street cred. Of course, eco-friendly designer boards are not new, but with skateboard decks now popping up as jewelery and even ad-hoc architectural elements, it was only a matter of time before someone took it a little further. That's what Art of Board, a design company based in Hannover, PA is doing with colourful, recycled scraps from broken skateboard decks. Their modus operandi: "Skateboarding is not a crime. Throwing away a perfectly broken skateboard deck, is." Starting in 2004, they have transformed discarded skateboard materials into unique accents, ranging from household accessories to furniture to wall tiles, using band saws, scrolls and sanders.
AOB owner Rich Moorhead in the press release:
The skaters help create the art too. Every scratch, scrape and gouge is kept intact - making each piece unique.
Their goal is to keep unwanted skateboards out of landfills, while providing visually-impactful and unique creative designs for homes and retailers.
To step up their efforts, AOB also recently launched a nationwide skateboard recycling program called I Ride I Recycle, working with over 30 shops in the Mid-Atlantic U.S.:
AOB's I Ride I Recycle movement will provide skate shops with a turnkey kit making them an official "I Ride I Recycle" shop. The kit includes window decals to help skaters recognize that the shop has an I Ride I Recycle "drop-off" site and pre-paid shipping labels so the shop owners can send their broken decks to AOB at no cost.
In a way, skateboarding has come of age, in recent years shedding its old punk associations and taking on a more positive, diversified and hip urban image. And now, it could end up in your kitchen, like this backsplash for Lofts @ Cherokee Studios, Hollywood, CA:
If AOB has its way, their recycled decks will be taking over the commercial wall surface industry soon: they are partnering with a major distributor, Erin Adams Surfaces, to bring their skateboard wall tiles to select showrooms in Los Angeles.