Thursday, December 9, 2010

Gene Pellegrene's Bench made from RX lumber

Another great creation by Gene Pellegrene from reclaimed old growth douglas fir 2x4's. This method of using end grain cuts of lumber is a great way to use up some of the smallest pieces of wood. To see more of Gene's handy work check our his website: or if you are interested in hiring him for a custom build you can email him at:

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Wine Rack Design Participants

Earlier this November we teamed up with LivingRoom Realty and Candid Wines for our first ever Wine Rack Design Competition. It turned out to be a lovely night filled with great designs made from our reclaimed materials, delicious organic wines by Candid Wines, fresh beats, great company, and good fund-raising. Below are some photos of the designs.

Design By: Kate Votava and Craig Hamilton

Design by: Evan Ward

Design By: Gabriel Akagawa

Design by: Richard McGinnis

Design by : Heather Mullins

Reclaimed bed frame by Whitney Gaylord

Another great creation by Whitney Gaylord from RX lumber. To see more of her handy work look her website:

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Build Your Own Reclaimed Frame

December 18th 11:00-2:00 at the ReBuilding Exchange
Get into the holiday spirit with our hands on frame building workshop. In this workshop, Raun Meyn will instruct you in how to build a 8x10" frame out of reclaimed materials from the ReBuilding Exchange. Handmade gifts are the best way to show you care and you can take home the skills to build more. This workshop costs $45.00 and includes all materials.

To see more of Raun's craftsmenship, check out his website:

To RSVP: email Meegan at

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Karl Emanuel's Table from RX Lumber

This table and bench set was created by Karl Emanuel and Syndy Ziegenfuss. They used reclaimed floor joists and finished them off with sanding and lots of coats of marine varnish.

Friday, October 15, 2010

RX Wall Paneling part of "Hideous Beast-Survival School" Installation

Hideous Beast is a collaborative effort between two artists, Josh Ippel and Charlie Roderick. Through organizing structured participatory events we attempt to encourage cultural activity outside the bounds of mainstream entertainment and fabricated desire.

Please check out their website to read more about the Survival School installation and to see more photos.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Glasses crafted out of all salvaged materials by Blake Sloane

Blake Sloane has been volunteering in the shop with Cynthia helping train, create, and design. He has crafted these glasses 100% out of salvaged materials. Hinges, lenses, and red oak.

To see more of his creations check out his website:

Design for Reuse Primer

“Building green” is often linked with higher levels of energy efficiency or improved air quality. Even when considered, the sustainable materials market tends to focus on sustainably harvested materials or materials with recycled content. Yet, repurposing materials directly from the waste stream is the ultimate form of resource conservation.

The 15 diverse projects in the Design for Reuse Primer demonstrate new models of “building green.” Material reuse is always integral to a sustainable vision of how to tread lightly on the earth, be economically pragmatic, and nurture a community. From a school for children with learning differences to a center for holistic living, these case studies are intended to provide insights about the material reuse process in a wide variety of context. By discussing the challenges and demonstrating the benefits of reclaimed materials, we hope to demystify and inspire reuse.

The Design for Reuse Primer is part of a larger initiative to bring reuse stories to light. Stay tuned in the coming months for best practices from industry leaders, links to resources, and more stories from the field.

For more details go to:

Friday, September 24, 2010

Humboldt Park Presentation: Celebrating Jens Jensen’s 150th Birthday

As part of the Chicago Park District and Parkways Foundation series of events celebrating the life and work of Jens Jensen, a presentation will be offered at Humboldt Park Boathouse, 1359 N. Sacramento, Chicago. The event will be free and open to the public

September 29 at 6:00 pm

Julia S. Bachrach, Chicago Park District Historian will present “Humboldt Park: Jens Jensen's Living Laboratory." Jensen’s redesign of Humboldt Park between 1906 and 1908 provided an exciting opportunity for him. He had lived in the neighborhood for several years and had served as the park’s superintendent in the 1890s. Inspired by natural Midwestern scenery, Jensen created the park’s prairie river, edging it with native plants, rocky cascades, and stepping stone paths. He also incorporated Prairie style architecture in to the park, most notably the Boat House and Refectory designed by Schmidt, Garden and Martin. Ms. Bachrach will bring to life Jensen’s exciting transformation of the park.

Edward Torrez, AIA of Bauer Latoza Studios, presents "The Boathouse: Then and Now.” He will show the meticulous process of untaken by the architects of the restoration of this landmark building which originally housed boat storage, concessions, and provided a warming shelter for ice skaters and a public gathering space for summertime. The 2002 restoration project has won a number of awards including the Richard H. Driehaus Preservation Project of the Year.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Join us for an inquiry in affordable housing

Please join our friends Mike Newman, Rashmi Ramaswamy, and Helen Slade for an opening reception 5-6 PM Wednesday September 22, 2010. Check out the interactive display that they made out of RX materials.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Gene Pellegrene's corner unit made from RX lumber

The above shelf was constructed from RX lumber by Gene Pellegrene of Artist Painters. Our materials worked well for the rustic look Gene was looking for and the piece has now found it's place in the clients home.

Artist Painters is a company that executes all painting needs including murals. Basically it helps keep artists making art! You can see more work by Artist Painters on their website.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Creations with RX materials by Nolan Wells

Check out these cool creations that Nolan Wells made from RX materials. If you are interested in commissioning Nolan to do some building with reclaimed materials he can be reached at

Another table by Maker with Rx old growth

Another table by Maker with Rx's old growth doug fir. Commissioned by Workshop, a Pilsen boutique specializing in goods made from local and sustainable resources: women's apparel, accessories, and vintage accoutrements. 818 W 18th street.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

"Hole" a scuplture by Laurie Palmer made from RX lumber

"Hole" was created by Laurie Palmer, chair of the Sculpture Department at SAIC. Laurie used RX reclaimed lumber to create this work in progress where each layer is built as a separate ring and then laid on top of the next while gravity holds them together. It was based in part on research into mining and uses of the underground, as well as geologic time and the slow construction and fast destruction of the earth.

The ReBuilding Exchange is pleased to see all those carts of lumber magically transformed. We will keep you posted on the progress of this installation.

Thanks Laurie, this is truly fantastic!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wine Tasting Table by Candid Wines made from RX materials

This wine tasting table was created by Damien Casten of Candid Wines, a local organic wine distributor. Damien used all RX materials including; old growth lumber for the frame and industrial glass for the table top. Even the floor beneath the table was created from reclaimed 1x10 roof decking. Many thanks to Candid Wines for using so many RX materials.

For more info on Candid Wines please visit:

Friday, July 30, 2010

Scrap Wood and Flooring Bench

The image above is of a stool crafted for the show, "Here Not There" by our friends at Unit 2. They filled the walls of the MCA with our cast off material and inspired the public to get creative. Over the course of a month they came in to the RX and hauled off cut up lumber and flooring scrap. This great union helped us get closer to our goal of being zero waste while providing the show material to be crafted into functional pieces such as compost bins, stools, and tables.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Display case for the bar’s liquor selection

The Design Team at 555 International made this cool display case for liquor storage out of 20th century fireplace covers they found at Jan's Antiques.

For more info, read the Time out article:

For more info on Jan's Antique's Click here:

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Byron Driveway Farm

Another application of our lumber by Matt Nardella. Below he explains his project:

We have an unused driveway in front of our office that only gets used occasionally to load and unload materials. It is pretty useless. After recent water main work under our street the City even repoured the driveway that they tore up to install a new sidewalk ramp.

As part of our reclamation of the urban right-of-way project we have installed a raised planter bed, designed and built by moss with 100% reclaimed framing lumber from the Rebuilding Exchange. Now flourishing are tomatoes, basil, oregano, thyme, brussels sprouts, strawberries, and sage. Construction and current photos after the break.

For more info and pictures:

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Another Awesome Project with RX Lumber

Charlie Vinz, Ken Camden, and Dawn Marie Galtieri used RX lumber for their community project called DESIGN BUILD GROW EAT!

Design Build Grow Eat is a jobs training program for teenagers. Participants, under the instruction of design professionals and seasoned educators are designing, building and developing a sustainability plan for an outdoor classroom/community garden at Monroe Elementary School. Voice of the City, a Logan Square community arts organization, is implementing the program in partnership with Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA), CPS and After School Matters (ASM). The program will serve as a pilot for the Growing School Gardens (GSG) initiative of CPS. The goal of the GSG initiative is that every CPS school has a garden that functions as an outdoor classroom and enhances instruction through activity based learning.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Tweet Home Chicago Bird House Design Competition

Check out these awesome birdhouse made out of reclaimed materials. The ReBuilding Exchange offered a discount on supplies to all participants. Please read the details below and be sure to look at all the entries on the Flicker site!

The Tweet Home team would like to take this opportunity to offer all of you our sincere thanks. Without each and every one of you, the Tweet Home Chicago program would not have been possible. This year's program was a huge success and it's not quite over yet!

- We have 21 houses on display (see below for a list) in the Building Resource center of the Chicago Center for Green Technology (445 N Sacramento). If you've never been to CCGT, please consider stopping by to take a tour and appreciate the wonderful bird houses on display!

- There are currently two houses (see below) on display at the Chicago Architecture Foundation (224 S Michigan). If you happen to be in the Loop, stop by to have a look!

- We are finalizing lists of houses to be installed at the South Shore Cultural Center and in Lincoln Park. As soon as those houses are installed, we will make a list available. Please stay tuned!

- Last but not least, we have created a flickr page with a photo of every house in the competition. Please head to to have a look at all of the wonderful entries.

That's it for Tweet Home news. Please stayed tuned for house installation updates and, as always, feel free to email with any questions or comments.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Reuse Project -- General Economy Exquisite Exchange

Last month, the Cream Co. artists' collective created a temporary art installation to experiment with an open economy based on neighborly trade and exchange. Architect, friend of the ReBuilding Exchange and savvy user of reclaimed materials, Patrick Thornton, used materials from the ReBuilding Exchange as tabletops, for both displays and work tables! Check 'em out!

For more pictures and information on this neat project, visit

Saturday, May 22, 2010

RX Job Training Program

We launched our job training program in March and before the trainees head out into the field to do building deconstruction next month, they're spending time in the warehouse learning about the reuse industry, wood types, reuse applications, warehousing and inventory, and shop skills!

One of the trainee crews just finished their first RX Made furniture project constructed from reclaimed old growth lumber. Stay tuned for more project updates!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

ReBuilding Exchange Lumber turned bike polo barricade

Check out what Keith Evans and our friends at Chicago Bike Polo did with our reclaimed lumber! You can check out a bike polo game in Garfield Park at 2pm on Sundays and 6pm on Wednesdays. For info go to: or
Kilbourn Park Organic Greenhouse
Plant Sale

Saturday, May 15 & Sunday, May 16, 2010

Kilbourn Park Organic Greenhouse will sell more than 150 varieties of organically grown vegetable, herb and flower seedlings. The annual organic plant sale will take place Saturday, May 15, 10 am – 3 pm & Sunday, May 16, 10 am - 2 pm at 3501 N. Kilbourn Ave., just west of Milwaukee Ave. and south of Addison St. Plant prices range $2 & up. The Kilbourn Park Organic Greenhouse accepts payment for plants by cash only.

“Our large selection of organically grown tomato and pepper seedlings are always a draw, but you'll also find other interesting vegetables, flowers, and herbs,” said greenhouse manager Kirsten Akre. “This year we are asking our patron to help us and the environment by bringing their own tray or box for carrying plants”.

Are you interested in what we are growing? Please visit our blog at for a complete plant sale listing.

On Wednesday, May 19 from 5 – 7:30 pm, the Kilbourn Organic Greenhouse will host their Half-Price Sale and Gardening Basics: Free Question Answer session by the Master Gardeners of Cook County Chicago – University of Illinois Extension. Bring your gardening questions and select from limited quantities of organic seedlings.

Kilbourn Park, home to the Park District’s only organic-teaching greenhouse, offers workshops throughout the year. For questions regarding the organic plant sale, call Kilbourn Park Organic

Friday, March 26, 2010

Reclaimed Pine Dining Table

This beautiful custom dining table, collaboratively made by Eliot Irwin and Janet Ecklebarger, uses reclaimed pine from the ReBuilding Exchange, and a polyurethane stain finish.

MODified Originals Reclaimed Flooring Chair

Check out this 1950’s classroom-style steel frame updated with reclaimed wood flooring from the ReBuilding Exchange!

White oak floor boards were salvaged, stripped down, glued up into planks, and molded into this contemporary take on the classic schoolhouse seat. A tung oil finish seals the deal, bringing out the natural variations in the oak. A salvaged carbon steel frame was sanded and sealed, and together, they combine to make what we think to be a simple, striking side chair.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

ReBuilding Exchange Welcomes Alastair Salvador Quesada!

The ReBuilding Exchange's first intern Alison Dickson Quesada has given birth to a healthy baby boy, Alastair. Alison and her family have been an integral part of getting the ReBuilding Exchange up and running. Congratulations and welcome to the RX Family!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The ReBuilding Exchange materials have found a new home at Filter Cafe, which has now returned to Wicker Park! Go and check out the amazing job done by Matt Nardella of Moss Design. For more info check out

Thanks for supporting the RX and for using reclaimed materials in your build!
Filter is located at 1373 N. Milwaulkee

Friday, March 12, 2010

ReBuilding Exchange Anniversary Celebration Video!

Our friends at Natropolis recorded and produced this video of our 2010 Anniversary Celebration. As you can see, it was a great night for the ReBuilding Exchange and our friends. Thank you all who supported and participated!

Photos from the ReBuilding Exchange Roving Photobooth at our February 12th event!

At our annual fundraising event on February 12th, Photographer Justin Goh asked attendees to interact with reclaimed materials and they got creative!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Over a non-contiguous 24-hour work period, a series of experimental chairs have been produced on the site.
For this project Andy Hall set up a temporary workspace as HallMfg.
During each hour of work, one chair was designed, built, then displayed. This project is supported by materials from the ReBuilding Exchange a local organization with the mission to divert building materials from the waste stream and make them accessible to the public for reuse. This event expands the HallMfg process of secondary-use design where building and experimenting with materials results in edited knowledge and visually interesting material solutions.
Andy Hall operates Hall Manufacturing. The goal of this project is to develop relationships and community through the operation of a service workshop. Hall Manufacturing is a Chicago operation researching design for environment.