If you’re 30 or older, you probably remember using cassette tapes as a kid or during your teenage years. Those bulky, plastic tapes that easily took up more room than they were worth were gladly replaced with the invention of the compact disc. Where did all those unwanted cassettes end up? Most likely they ended up in two places: your trash or in a dusty box in your basement or attic. If you have some of these rare retro tapes, you could put them to good use. You can recycle them into fabric to make clothing, pillows or neckties.
A Texas artist, Alyce Santoro, introduced the idea of taking the tape and knitting it into sheets of fabric. Once she successfully produced a few articles of clothing, Designtex, a manufacturer, worked with her to develop a sustainable fabric made from unwanted cassette tape. One of the best aspects of cassette tape fabric is its durability, which makes it very useful for drapes, throw pillows, wall coverings and upholstery. There have been talks about creating furniture from the tape specifically designed for outdoor use.
Another New York designer, Julio Cesar, caught on to the innovative idea and combined audio cassette tape with natural fiber threads. The primary article he creates is neckties, made from 50% cassette tape and 50% thread. The end result is a stiff yet flexible necktie that comes in various earth tone colors ranging from browns to various grays.
This concept inspires people to think out of the box and use innovation for items that seem useless. Instead of throwing away the boxes of old stuff you have lying around your home, think about creative ways to reuse it. If you know how to knit, try to find some old cassettes and knit the fabric together to make your own creation.