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Monday, 30 September 2013

TrEnvy Australia is Repurposing for new Spring Collection

Spring is here and all through Winter we have been designing and creating our newest Spring Collection with a twist. This season we decided it was going to be a re-purpose, recycle season.

And why much these days is wasted due to our throw away society. So our idea was to collect over Autumn a range of old 60's and 70's Teak/Monkey Pod Bowls and servers to re-purpose.

They were always the highlights at my Nan's parties, she seemed to always put out some really unusual designed bowls, filled with cheese, kabana, crackers, gherkins and even her famed pickled onions.

I think most of us would remember them, and have some amazing stories about these unique little island style platters, bowls and severs. Now of course who could forget the ever popular Pineapple Bowls, probably the most famous of all these retro teak bowls, which also now seem to be the hardest to find, although not impossible.

Original Retro Teak Pineapple Bowl

So with an array of newly sourced Retro Bowls, Servers and Plates it was time to sand them back to their original state...plain, no oils or varnish.

Once sanded back the planned design was to paint them, but an added feature to the design, was to leave either the top or bottom of these retro beauties, in their original & organic state. To highlight, not only their age, but their former glorious craftsmanship. (Remembering these were handcrafted in the hundreds of thousands, by island villagers in places like the Philippines and Hawaii).
So sanding begins, washing off some of the original patina but not too much as I still wanted that unique retro quality to shine through when finished.
Painting the bowls was to follow, now you think this would be a simple task. Well to most it would be, but being a perfectionist, as I am, (OK, perhaps a tad anal, if I'm being absolutely honest). This proved to be quite the challenge. Colours changed several times, which meant sanding back many times, then when I thought they were perfect after spraying them outside, either a bug or small leaf would get stuck in the paint.. therefore another sand-back and re-coat began. Oh the trials and tribulations of not having a spraying room. Here is a few looks from some of the same bowls, just to give you an idea of these trials.



From the finished paint jobs, I then decided to continue the recycled/re-purpose theme, by adding off-cut vinyl, which was graciously donated by my sister Niki, she is a vinyl sign writer, her business MySigns located west of the Gold Coast in the small country town of Boonah. (If you need your car decal'd or wall/windows, perhaps even a sign done, Niki is your girl, check out her FBpage),

We thank Niki, as she was happy to supply me with a large amount of off-cuts, which I then sliced to prepare for the next stage of my re-purposed retro teak dishes.

  MySigns FB page
A vast array of coloured vinyl supplied by MySigns

With vinyl cut, dishes painted its time to decide colour choices and design...this is always the fun part. And here's a few pics of the design process and outcome.

So we come to a conclusion after a few trial and errors, always, Less is More!

Then placement begins, to complete.


The TrEnvy Australia Design process in block shots

  TrEnvy Australia Living Collection

Once the design process is complete it is time to finish off with our logo, again these are printed right here at TrEnvy HQ and each piece will receive its own unique TrEnvy Australia logo, we then high gloss coat in a waterproof varnish.


There you have it, our very own re-purposed TrEnvy Australia Retro Teak Dishes for our new Spring Collection. Each one as unique as you are. These will be uploaded to our TrEnvy Australia site very shortly for sale, please remember these are one of a kind and made by hand.

  TrEnvy Australia FB page
We hope you will appreciate our effort to maintain a little of the original teak mixed with our own personal TrEnvy - Trend Envy touch.

All rights reserved, copyright - TeePs (Trent) Firmin & TrEnvy Australia 2013


  1. GREAT stuff TeePee's I love your designs. Hope you go far with them :)

    1. Thanks Tiki Brian, as always I appreciate your comments and kind words, always exciting showing the world my new designs and creations, I hope we go far with them also, it's always great to place new life into something that gets pushed aside for new products. Smi)es to you and wishing you the best too. :)