My upcycling project involves repurposing empty water bottles to create an underwater aesthetic. Conversely, to achieve a desert or arid aesthetic using water bottles, one could explore incorporating warm, earthy tones like sand, terracotta, and rusty reds, along with natural materials such as rough-hewn wood, leather, and woven textiles. Decor elements might include cacti, succulents, and motifs inspired by desert landscapes such as dunes, canyons, and mesas. The overall ambiance of a desert aesthetic would be warm, dry, and rugged, contrasting with the cool, watery, and fluid feel of an aquatic aesthetic.

It Snowed In The Sahara Desert For The Third Time In 40 Years And The ...

Figure 1: Picture of Sahara desert

While there are numerous ways to incorporate a desert aesthetic using plastic bottles, one idea that contrasts with my upcycling project is creating luminaries. Luminaries are decorative objects designed to emit light, and in the context of a desert aesthetic, they can be made using plastic bottles to evoke the warm, natural glow often associated with desert landscapes. To create a luminary with a plastic bottle, one would typically insert a light source inside, such as a candle or an LED light. The translucent quality of the plastic allows the light to shine through, creating a soft, diffused glow. Luminaries can be used in various ways to enhance a desert aesthetic, such as along pathways or on patios to create a warm, inviting atmosphere, or indoors to add a desert-inspired ambiance to a room. When making luminaries, it’s important to use caution with open flames and ensure that the materials are heat-resistant and safe. LED lights are a safer alternative to candles and can provide a similar effect without the risk of fire.

Figure 2: An illustration of the luminary idea

Experimenting with different bottle sizes and shapes can help create a variety of luminaries. Tall, slender bottles could mimic the silhouette of desert plants like cacti, while shorter, wider bottles can evoke the look of desert rocks or dunes. Adding decorative elements to the luminaries, such as wrapping the bottles in twine or painting them with desert-inspired motifs, can enhance their desert theme. Grouping several luminaries to create a striking visual display, such as arranging them in a cluster to mimic a desert oasis or placing them along a pathway to guide the way like stars in the desert sky, can further enhance the desert aesthetic.

Figure 3: A cluster of plastic bottles with LEDs

Orbeez, water-absorbent polymers that expand when soaked in water, can also be used to enhance the desert aesthetic. One idea is to create a miniature cactus garden using small, artificial cacti and arranging them in a bed of green Orbeez to simulate desert vegetation. Another idea is to use a large, shallow container to create a desert oasis scene by filling it with blue Orbeez to represent water, surrounded by green Orbeez and small rocks to create a lush oasis in the desert. Placing LED candles or lights underneath a layer of clear Orbeez can also create a soft, diffused glow reminiscent of moonlight on a desert landscape.


Figure 1: It Snowed In The Sahara Desert For The Third Time In 40 Years And The Photos Are Incredible – BroBible

Figure 2:

Figure 3:

I have used Dall-E to generate images for my ideas.

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Venkata,
    Your vision is great. Super descriptive and well thought out. I wonder how you might be able to incorporate sand in an arid aesthetic . If this was carried out as an aesthetic, would the display be stationary, indoors or outdoors? Where would you think of putting something like this?

  • The details and examples you provided make it clear you put a lot of thought and consideration into how you would achieve an arid aesthetic in our repurposing of water bottles. If I did not know this was for an opposite aesthetics post, I would have thought it was your main project from how clear your vision was! I am curious if you considered how you could arrange or alter the shape of the bottles to convey that rugged feel of the desert.


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