Upcycle Inspiration: Wallet

For my upcycle project, I drew inspiration from a recent aesthetic exploration that Christopher Lehr, a fellow colleague in our course, observed [¹]. This aesthetic: “The Peter McKinnon Aesthetic” centers around the photographer Peter McKinnon, one of minimalism, simplicity, rusticity, yet modern. Looking into McKinnon’s videos, I came across his documentation of all the wallets he had ever used (Titled “The Best Minimalist EDC Wallets” [²]), which gave me inspiration to make my own carry-on that I would be proud of, for my upcycle project. The intrigue and motivation comes from making something that I’ll carry with me everyday, that is aesthetically pleasing, and has a great use.

The main material I am looking to use would be re-purposed vinyl billboard, taking the strengths we see from duck tape in its flexibility and the strengths of cardboard in its texture and specific aesthetic, while not appearing dull and stiff.

Related imageImage result for vinyl billboard recycled

Figure 1 and 2: Material selection, recycled and re-purposed vinyl billboard, image source: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/92534967313929824/?lp=true

Some designs that I will be looking at for wallets will both be minimalist, but still highly functional. If my material ends up changing, I could go the route of re-purposed sheet metal to make wallets like ridge wallets, but until then, below are sufficient designs that I’m exploring.

Simple Card Wallet // Woodland

Figure 3: Some Bexar Goods Wallets, very simple designs but very functional and very nice hand stitching that I like, in terms of an aesthetic. Image Source: https://www.bexargoods.com/products/simple-card-wallet-woodland

Figure 4: I really like the style of stictching on this particular wallet, maybe I will be able to duplicate some sort of aesthetic. Image Source: https://www.amazon.com/American-Bifold-Wallet-Brown-Stitching/dp/B07G5W8JX9

Citations [2]:

¹Lehr, Christopher. “The Peter Mckinnon Aesthetic.” Aesthetics of Design, Jean Hertzberg, 28 Jan. 2020, www.aesdes.org/2020/01/22/the-peter-mckinnon-aesthetic/.

²McKinnon, Peter, director. The Best Minimalist EDC WalletsYouTube, YouTube, 17 Dec. 2019, www.youtube.com/watch?v=1sPtKl00iDc.

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Will:

    Awesome idea! Reusing billboard material is a brilliant solution to some sustainability issues this world has and the way you relate it to duct tape really hit me as I made duct tape wallets years and years ago. Awesome building material and I’m excited to see how it comes together! One thing I might suggest for you is to be sure you can work with that material in the same way you could with the leather that you gave examples of. Those seem like pretty different materials to me but I could be wrong! Good luck!

    • Davis-

      Thanks for the comment! I’ll be going to a repurposed materials facility in Brighton to check out some of their repurposed vinyl billboard. Over the phone, they said the material is flexible enough for my purposes! Hope it turns out and doesn’t disappoint.


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