Cartoni Design

The Beauty of Waste: Reuse


Marijn Muller is the founder of Cartoni Design, a distinctive design label that markets handmade furniture made from reclaimed, recycled and sustainable materials such as cardboard. Furniture made by designers such as Wisse Trooster (participant Designday 2017), Ernst Koning and Sabine van der Ham.
Cartoni Design is appropriately located in CIRCL – the circular pavilion of ABNAmro on the Amsterdam Zuidas. During Designday, the label is temporarily located in the Decorfabried Maastricht.

Marijn Muller (co-founder Willem Tacken recently left the company) combines his commercial background with a great affinity for (sustainable) design. It all started with coming up with festival furniture and Smart Styling Furniture – temporary furniture for the furnishing of empty real estate. In the meantime, Muller has gained a great deal of experience and knowledge of sustainable and circular design. The label started with the AMS series by Ernst Koning, made out of cardboard, and has since been supplemented by special designs by Wisse Trooster, among others.

‘Circular building has become more standard than exception,’ says Muller. ‘I answer the growing demand for circular applications in interiors with innovative furniture produced sustainably in the Netherlands, using carefully selected recycled materials and biodegradable glue. Now I am still a pioneer, but the young generation of millennials is seriously working on it; in ten years’ time circular interiors may be standard’.

There are still people who think of grey, ugly and fragile products when it comes to cardboard. By working together with designers, the label demonstrates its beauty. The designs last as long and are as strong and beautiful as wooden furniture. That’s the strength with which we stand out,” he says. We see waste streams as a raw material for special products in which the original recycling material is not immediately recognisable. My goal is therefore,’ says Muller: ‘to show the world the beauty of sustainability through the eyes of designers.’
During Desigday he will show a mini version of what he showed in April in the Dutch pavilion Masterly at the Salone del Mobile in Milan. In Palazzo Francesco Turati he transformed a neo-Renaissance style room into a contemporary style room made of recycled materials.
Wisse Trooster showed an exceptionally handmade ‘Recovery’ residual wood sideboard from a local door manufacturer, as well as the modern version of a nineteenth century chandelier: the minimalist 900 pendant lamp made of layers of recycled corrugated cardboard from Smurfit Kappa and durable LED lighting.
And also the AMS series of furniture by Ernst Koning. The minimal collection consists of a table, chair, side table and a closet. And from the young designer Sabine van der Ham there are her first design products: lamps to be folded out into harmonica from residual material of a cardboard processor.

Muller firmly believes in strengthening the circular economy by working together with partners who are committed to this economic model. For example, he will dress up his presentation with Desso carpet tiles made of residual materials, and Ernst Koning will create beautiful tables in collaboration with a social workshop in Amsterdam using materials from construction sites of construction company BAM. The sound-absorbing walls are fitted with high-quality recycled textiles from Enschede Textile City weaving mill and filled with the first and only 100% cradle-to-cradle insulation material from Everuse, manufactured from our own recycled paper waste. The wall got a lick of paint without any toxic additives from Fairf, so you can, so to speak, lick the walls.


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