We went to Clerkenwell Design Week 2011 and discovered DesignMarketo, a platform showcasing up-and-coming designers’ small and limited productions. One of these designers’ on display was items from User Development Organisation, an open and multidisciplinary collective, interested in sociology, from supermarket tourism to Google image search and public behaviour. Its production ranges from publications, prints and illustrations to videos, products and public interventions.

One of their very special projects is simple: to upcycle old, unwanted, mismatched decorated cutlery and drinking glasses by coating the handle with a thin rubber layer, so that the decoration shows through. By doing this, and by using the same rubber colour, the pieces match, creating a new set.

Upcycled cutlery

Upcycled drinking glasses

Upcycled teacups

The tea set is made by old mismatched broken pink porcelain cups, combined with porcelain animal miniatures, two of the least loved items in charity shops and car boot sales. We created a new set by repairing the broken handles with a composition of the animal miniatures.