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Beth McDowall

Beth is an innovative upcycler who creatively repurposes materials in a quirky fashion extending their usable lifespan into new homewares and decorative items.

 

Motivated by her passion to work sustainably and imaginatively, Beth works from her home based workshop in Innerpeffray, near Crieff under the name The Treecycler.

 

Aesthetic

At the core of Beth’s inspiration are the beautiful Perthshire trees and woodlands where she enjoys walking and spotting the gnarly roots, burrs, bark and leaves. Her love of trees is visible in both her designs and materials used and Beth knows that crafting and polishing a piece of wood will reveal it’s inner beauty.

 

Additionally the relinquished materials Beth finds are also inspiration, along with the challenge of developing different creative reuse ideas.  She loves nothing more than creating new things from old and her work has a rustic appearance reflecting the provenance of the items original purpose.  Beth’s aim is to create a beautiful functional piece whilst retaining and honouring the original craftsmanship of its original form. As an example her vintage lamps are created using apprentice carpenters discarded planes made as at the turn of the century.

Practice

Beth’s process varies according to the materials she finds to work with.  Known affectionally as a modern day Womble - Making good use of the things that she finds, things that the everyday folks leave behind - her practice is based on preventing waste from entering landfill and sources many of her materials locally. As a result, it’s unlikely that two pieces will ever be the same with many of her creations being one offs, making her work very exciting.

 

On a practical level, many of her base materials need cleaning and preparing before being re-used, such as stripping copper wire out of old electrical cables and de-greasing bicycle wheels.  When ready to be creatively used, Beth uses the wire sculpturally to create a piece of wall art depicting trees within a bike wheel as a frame, or clocks, or a vintage piece of kitchenware as a lamp base, unwanted cutlery as a set of hooks or a piece of waste wood beautifully crafted into a candleholder. Each piece has a story from its past, a new function for the present and thanks to Beth a future use and lifespan, away from landfill.

Location and Links

Innerpeffray, Perthshire

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Work by this artisan