Gilbert de Rooij
My name is Gilbert de Rooij and I made this blog to show what upcycle design is all about.

I’m a graphic designer living in The Netherlands. After using my creativity for 25 years in the graphic design field I felt the need to do something else. It still had to be creative. Because I’ve always been interested in design I decided to start a blog on tumblr. I started a blog called dutchDZINE in March 2012 to show the world Dutch design and design in general. [Since 2016 this blog is no longer online] The first time I went to the Salone 2012 in Milan I searched for great design. And there was lots of it. At some point even too much, because I noticed that all the great designs that were out there did nothing for the environment or didn’t add anything to what was already there. Except of course a few young designers who were willing to stand out.

And that’s when it became more and more clear to me that I was missing something. Most designers only try to make something different or beautiful. And in a way, this is great and has its place in design. But I became convinced that designers should also be more aware of our environment and try to make a design with added value for the world. Just designing more and more isn’t the way it should be anymore.

Well after I realized this I started to focus on upcycle design, the superlative of recycle. When creating a design we should actually consider whether we need the product and if it could be produced differently or if it could be made from waste material. And the latter is upcycling.

Giving a new destination to a product that otherwise would end up on the dirt pile. And now the big thing is to create special designs for those products. By doing this the upcycle designer is adding value and improves the world we live in.

The environment is something I’ve always cared about. So now that I stepped into the world of upcycling I noticed that I can bring a few things together that are close to my heart. Since I blog about upcycling I want to design upcycle products myself. And especially lighting. Because my dad always worked at Philips Lighting Division it comes as no surprise that I like the design of lighting and lamps.

In April 2013 I started the blog upcycleDZINE to show only examples of eco-friendly or upcycle design. And by sharing what people are making I want to show what can be done.
Other things I’m working on are my own upcycle design, graphic paintings that are made up by lines and photography.
So what inspires me in this world? Well, there are so many things. In no particular order: movies, videos, photography, art, design, music, sports, nature, and other cultures.
Please feel free to ask or comment!



  1. Well done! I am an interior designer! Environment is important to me too. Creating something out of “nothing” is so much more invegorating and inspirational. The throwing culture never cease to amaze me…..and designers have this remarkable opportunity to revert that.

    • Hi, thanks for visiting my blog and for sharing your views. I totally agree. But that’s something you might know 🙂 I hope you use upcycle design in your interior designs.
      Take care, Gilbert

    • Hi Hana, Thank you for visiting my site. Great to hear you are going to Milan. I’m looking forward to visit Milan this year again. And it would be nice to see you and your work there. Keep upcycling!

  2. Hi, I'm a student of architecture at Mexico and I just loved your site. Is there any place I could look up to buy some of the elements you are showing?

    • Hello Maria,

      First thank you for the kind words. Always nice to hear feedback, good or bad!
      The items that I show on my blog are sold at separate sites.
      Most of the times when you follow the links in the text you'll find more info on where the items are sold.
      If you can't find a specific item, let me know, maybe I can help you.
      Good luck with your study.

      Best regards,
      Gilbert de Rooij


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