Plastic Bird House by Colectivo da Rainha

Challenged by the local water company, Serra da Estrela, Portuguese design firm Colectivo da Rainha was to find a way to re-use the company’s PET plastic bottles as the central material in a new product. Accepting the challenge, the duo created the Plastic Bird House as a way to give a home to birds from something you already have in your home.

The water company takes environmental issues seriously with their campaign to plant a tree for each bottle that’s sold and the designers, Filipa Ricardo and Renato Silva, took that to heart with their own belief that we all have “a home for nature in our home.” Each birdhouse is made from a single water bottle and the handle remains as a perch for the birds.

After experimenting with the bottles and seeing that they could be re-molded and shaped with heat, the material became useful. Best of all, the birdhouses are now being made and sold by a team of once-unemployed artisans as a way of carving their own employment stability in the job market.

Photos courtesy of Colectivo da Rainha.

Caroline Williamson is Editorial Director of Design Milk. She has a BFA in photography from SCAD and can usually be found searching for vintage wares, doing New York Times crossword puzzles in pen, or reworking playlists on Spotify.