With some exceptions, architecture built from discarded goods don't need to look like trash; in fact, there's a slew of evidence—including all manner of impeccable shipping container houses, eco-friendly millionaire pads, and, err, cafes made from old public bathrooms—proving that recycled materials (plus time and cash) can make rather lovely abodes, and this house in Enschede, The Netherlands, could very well be the the poster child of adaptive reuse. Clad in wood stripped from 600 dismantled cable reels and outfitted in kitchen cabinets made of billboards, Villa Welpeloo, a "super-recycled" house by the Rotterdam-based firm Superuse Studios recently featured in Dwell, is a prime example of what locally sourced trash can create.
According to one of the architects, Jan Jongert, reused materials account for 60 percent of the house's structure and as much as 90 percent of the furnishings and hardware inside. The building's steel bones hail from a nearby textile mill, harvested from disused machinery. The angular halogen lamps on the home's exterior are actually made of broken umbrellas collected from locals of a neighborhood in Utrecht: "You do and you don't recognize the reused parts," Jongert told Dwell. "It's simultaneous recognition and estrangement—which is what gives rise to beauty, and humor." Also inside: a vintage shop display case, a Louis XVI console, and, yes, an inflatable plastic armchair.