Coaster Collage

For my upcycle project I decided to create something for my Dad that he could keep forever and that would add to his bar aesthetic. While traveling through Europe for my study abroad experience I visited many, many bars and got to experience the different drinking styles of these countries. I found that many drink for the social aspect and tend to only have one or two drinks for the taste. Following this respectful drinking nature, I decided to start a collection to remember each of the unique bars I visited. My collection consisted of bar coasters and throughout my travels I attempted to keep at least one from each unique bar that I went to. After about 3 months of traveling I had a large collection of coasters and once I got back to the U.S. I decided to create something memorable out of them.

The Bar aesthetic

These are just a few of the unique bars I got to experience and from each I took at least one coaster to remember it by. I loved the bar aesthetic in Europe. It consisted either of a clean, professional look or gave off a homey vibe by decorating the walls and ceilings with artistic content. My inspiration came from visiting the bar Lion’s Fountain (top image) with their completely covered walls and ceilings.

My idea was to condense all of my traveling experiences into one memorable, decorative item that I could give to my Dad. I started with a blank picture frame, laid out my large collection of coasters, and quickly went to work laying them out across the frame. I wanted it to look sporadic, other than a few of my favorites, so I didn’t organize them beforehand. Hot glue held them to the back of the frame and in the end I even had enough coasters to make two separate final projects.

I ended up being extremely pleased with the final design. My Dad was too! He said it complemented his bar aesthetic that he had going on and I hung the other in my own room. When you look at this from different angles you can see the 3 dimensional aspect that comes with using thick coasters inside of a picture frame. Overall this project was exciting and brings back tons of memories for me and my time traveling through Europe.

Here is a video of me presenting this upcycle project to my class:


Previous Post
Draw-String T-Shirt
Next Post
Upcycle Project : 50s Style Paper Dress Final Report

11 Comments. Leave new

  • Hussam Alzahrani
    February 17, 2019 11:04 am

    This is a super cool idea for an upcycle project. This reminds me of when people would collect license plates from the states/countries they go to and hang them on their wall. The idea of it being with coasters instead is really nice, I like how they are slightly overlapping but not covering each other. This is would make a great gift.

  • The project is really cool, the bar feel is very different in America as compared to places in Europe, and the aesthetics can be as well. This is well done in a way of bringing the slight differences together in a way that captures the feel of the European bars but would fit in almost any bar aesthetic. Was there any specific pattern to the way the coasters are laid out? If there isn’t is there some grouping you could do, like maybe by location, or by type of bar? This is a really cool piece of wall art though that rounds out anywhere with a bar type aesthetic.

  • William Benson
    February 13, 2019 1:19 pm

    This project makes me want to hit the bars! I really like the process because it invloves a lot of traveling. The fact that you gave it to your dad was really cool. Well done

  • Nice! I like how your design holds a lot of memories and you can remember the places you’ve been with one glance at it. And the final project looks really clean, like a piece of art you can hang on a wall.

  • Nicholas Degenhart
    February 13, 2019 1:17 pm

    This is an interesting project, and your inspiration behind it is very cool. Your piece captures a very unique aesthetic.

  • Jared Campbell
    February 13, 2019 1:17 pm

    It was nice that you already had the coasters from a previous collection and were able to utilize them in this project. It was also that you were able to make two different prints one for your farther and one for you. Maybe next time you can utilize more of the white space.

  • Jealous on all the beers you drank. I think next time you should organize them by alcohol content. Awesome project.

  • It seemed like you had a pretty genuine inspiration for the project. It sounds like it will fit in well wherever your dad decides to put it.

  • Yousef Alqattan
    February 13, 2019 1:16 pm

    You had a lot of really good images of your project and how you got your inspiration. I would have loved to see a building process of your project, but other than that everything was good and concise.

  • Great job on the inspiration! The fact that this idea came from bars walls in Europe is incredibly unique. I like how you were able to gift your dad a part of this upcycling project!

  • I like this project! I think that the white space around the edges is actually a really cool element. It has a clean aesthetic and also captures the bar aesthetic nicely at the same time.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.