Bringing old furniture back to life

Press releases - 02 Sep 2019

HOUSEFUL’s partner alchemia-nova organised an upcycling workshop in Vienna

Two upcycling designers and a diverse group of 33 refugees joined the upcycling workshop launched by alchemia-nova, member of the HOUSEFUL consortium, in collaboration with Caritas Vienna and Vienna municipality. The workshop took place in April and May 2019 at the Otto-Wagner Hospital Vienna as suitable space for intermediate utilization before further repurposing. The goal was to give new life to old furniture and bulky waste accumulated over the last decades in the attic of an old Viennese building.

The two designers (Christina Skrabal from the design label Miststueck with support from Helmut Schabschneider from alchemia-nova) worked with the refugees and helped them develop new skills and knowledge in the fields of upcycling and restoration of old home objects. The result of the workshop was the birth of an upcycled office space, the meaningful engagement of refugees, the attraction of wider audience in Vienna, and the reality check of a potential new circular business model.

Initiatives such as alchemia-nova’s workshop are key to the success of HOUSEFUL’s mission and, in particular, of two of its innovative solutions for a more circular housing sector: the optimal management of waste at the end of building life cycle and co-creation via social engagement.