Yoo by Starck‘s Montreal office and The Hospital Club in London have an unusual material in common – recycled leather belts. Flooring and wall panelling made from the upcycled textile are incorporated into their designs, proving them a viable alternative to wood.
The leather-belt products are the brainchild of Inghua Ting who began by creating fashion accessxories from found materials before launching Ting Home.
“Leather is a familiar, trustworthy material that ages well over time and is similar to wood in terms of robustness,” says Ting. “It’s a good alternative because it’s natural and provides a multi-sensory experience – it’s lovely and warm underneath your feet.”
Ting sources belts from California and Europe, often receiving bulk loads from old uniforms for the police or postal service. Ting explains that the Western bolted belts provide a very different aesthetic to European belts, which tend to be plainer and less textured.
“This year, I’m working on leather-belt flooring for a country music museum that’ll be brown and earthy and rustic,” Ting says. “We’re getting larger, global projects now and we’ve got about six on at the moment.”