Upcycle Final Report: Silverware Holder



My main focus for this upcycle project was to build something useful that adds a beautiful touch to my kitchen. I really enjoy cooking and having an organized kitchen is really important to me. Therefore, I started to look at different upcycle projects and I was inspired by the amazing design shown in the image above. This silverware holder has been designed by Bianca Barreto who worked in several niches of art as scenographer, project designer, teacher, and photographer.

Ideas & Goals

I started to look for stuff that I can use to build my upcycle project, and I found an old cutting board and a bunch of soda cans. The cutting board had some cracks I thought that those will add some sort of antique style to the project. Therefore, I started to sketch my ideas and the structure of my design. As shown in the image below, I initially decided to make only two holders for knives and switches. However, after measuring the available space on the cutting board, I found out that it will be more aesthetically pleasing to have three cans. In addition, my first idea was to make the base of the board flat to have it stand on a table, but the thickness of the board was not big enough to support the structure.

Thus, I listed the following goals for my project:

  • Soda cans as holders for knives, forks, and spoons
  • Cutting board for the base of the design
  • Laser cut a knife, a fork, and a spoon for labeling
  • Hang the board on kitchen’s wall
  • Modern and antique aesthetic


Reflections & Challenges

  • Spray painting soda cans was challenging since the paint did not bind properly on the cans
  • Soda cans might not be durable since they get damaged easily, so I think that I should have used steel cans instead
  • Sanding down knife cuts on the cutting board was another challenge since I sanded it down with high grit sand paper and polished it with smooth sand paper, however, the cuts did not fully disappear
  • I had to make four prototypes for the fork label when laser cutting it due to the small thickness of its teeth



[1] http://www.madamecriativa.com.br/blog/porta-talheres-com-ala-feito-com-latas-madeira-e-couro

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8 Comments. Leave new

  • Abdulaziz Alrashed
    May 6, 2019 2:50 am

    wow. what a great project. loved the paint. my suggestion would be to strengthen the support beneath the bottles.

  • Alexis Nibbelink
    February 13, 2019 1:05 pm

    Abdulrahman, great presentation! I loved the sort of gray scale aesthetic of your project. Nice job on the laser cut silver wear. It was a nice added detail that added to the aesthetic.

  • Jordan Nahabetian
    February 12, 2019 9:41 am

    I like the aesthetic you achieved with this product. You shaped up the condition of the cutting board quite well. Cutting the soda can with a can opener was a really good idea!

  • Gabe Coffman-Lee
    February 11, 2019 3:46 pm

    This turned out really well! Your end result was both aesthetically and functionally pleasing, and I hope it’ll be able to actually hold silverware. Aesthetically, I enjoyed the color scheme as well as the acrylic laser-cut accents, and it should be a quality accoutrement for your kitchen. The only thing I would suggest for future revisions is to maybe physically attach the cans to the cutting board rather than just glue them, maybe with upholstery tacks or something similar just to improve their strength.

  • Hi Abdulrahman,
    Nice job with the project and presentation! I really like the neutral colors that you used and the aesthetic that it created. Also, I like how you made something that is practical and is something that you will use in the future.

  • This project was beautiful. The paint came out very even so good work on that. I would recommend adding a couple of nails under each can for support. Great work making a very aesthetic and useful project!

  • Chris Mcfadden
    February 11, 2019 1:36 pm

    I was amazed that you were able to get the paint so even on the cans. And the utensils were super intricate to be lasercut. if the epoxy fails under the weight of the utensils you might think about putting some screws through the backside of the cans or mount it to a small L-bracket that would be barely visible underneath.

  • Hello Abdulrahman, I think you did a great job with your presentation. Your slides were succinct and you were able to hit all of your talking points smoothly. Your final product looked great, and you will be able to use your final product reliably in the future. You did a good job using engineering center resources, specifically the laser cutter, to apply interesting and pretty aesthetics to your final product


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