House & Garden | Need To Now

Time-limited luxuries

Suddenly the future looks good for abandoned Christmas trees

Time-limited luxuries

December 15 2010
Nicole Swengley

Come Twelfth Night, the streets of London start to resemble the scene from Macbeth where Birnam Wood comes to Dunsinane as abandoned Christmas trees clog pavements and fill wheelie bins. But now there’s a far more inspiring future for your fir. Thanks to the aptly named Christmas Tree Project, it can be turned into a handsome, hand-crafted stool that will add a deliciously raw touch to your residence.

In this joint venture between Gallery Libby Sellers and designer Fabien Cappello, homeowners are invited to contact the gallery any time between now and January 6 to place an order for a stool made from a redundant Christmas tree (either your own or a discarded one). The tree will be collected by the gallery (from addresses in Greater London only) and returned in its new guise with the trunk and branches forming the stool’s seat and legs respectively.

Cappello – who graduated from the Royal College of Art last year – is fascinated by regionally sourced materials and manufacturing processes and this smart upcycling idea underpins his interest in design “cartography”. Prices depend on the collection/return address but start from about £480. If you don’t have a tree, the gallery can rescue one for you – at no extra cost. A percentage of profits from the project will be donated to the Woodland Trust.