Trash to Treasure


A regenerative and creative design culture where the end products are cleaner, healthier, useful and usually have more value than the original material used.


Tons of waste are produced every day in our cities.  An effort is being made to raise awareness and to redefine the idea of recycling.  Young designers and artists are upcycling and transforming “trash” into marketable products.

People in developing countries have effectively been upcycling for years, using old packaging and clothing in new ways, although more out of need than for the environment.

The Amish quilt also came about through necessity by re-purposing worn or used clothing and fabric, creating beautiful pieced together blankets.


Simon Rodia’s Watts Tower (1921-1954) in Los Angeles exemplifies upcycling of scrap metal, pottery and broken glass on a grand scale; it consists of 17 structures, the tallest reaching over 30 meters into the skyline.


Look at Etsy and Pintrest.  Thousands of creative people are joining the cause with unique handcrafted artwork and functional items including some right here at Sundance and Friends.


Ed Eberle Fine Woodworking

Right from the woodpile!

Swaths of mountain pine beetle killed pines are a blight on the Colorado landscape.  Ed takes advantage of the distinctive grayish-blue hues caused by blue stain fungus carried on the heads of the beetles to create beautiful pieces with a very distinct look.   



Nicole Reed – For You From Me

Got a stain smack in the center of your favorite sweater?  Nicole can transform a throwaway item like that into cozy and trendy fingerless gloves and leg warmers. She uses fun color combinations from classy to wild…each one is completely unique!


YardBirds – Rich Kolb

Who would have thought nuts, bolts, springs, washers and doorknobs could be so cute!  Scrap & reject metal and old parts reorganized and welded into critters and creatures. Can you recognize what the different parts are?


RESTRUNG Jewelry – Mike Madden

Inventive and beautiful designs using repurposed guitar strings.  Sometimes when I wear mine, I like to imagine all of the songs that have been played on my upcycled bracelet. I was surprised at how beautiful and sparkly it was in the sunshine!


And our very own COOZIES!


Wine or beer bottle, can size or even a growler.  Through the years we’ve come up with LOTS of ideas on how to use the leftovers from handcrafting sheepskin slippers and boots.  Why throw away that last little bit?  Sew it up and voila! – the Sundance Sheepskin Coozie was born.  And just in case you’re wondering, they actually work great…and no, they won’t make your beer warm 😉


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