Design on a Dime: Duct Tape Decor

In my everyday tool drawer, duct tape is probably the most useful item, a quick and cheap fix for everything from taping a box to crafting a last-minute robot costume on Halloween. Some artists and DIY types take it a step further, creating eye-popping furniture, rugs and art.

Duct tape was invented during WWII, a solve-all product that was strong, flexible and waterproof. It may have utilitarian roots, designed to fix things in a pinch, but the sticky stuff now comes in every color of the rainbow, not to mention patterns from camo to cheetah.

When a client recently asked me to think up some fun DIY projects featuring duct tape, I turned to Google. The amount of blog space devoted to duct tape is astounding. What really piqued my interest were the many ways people had applied it in interiors, from a simple cover-up for ugly tile as described in this Apartment Therapy post to brazenly livening up floors, walls and furniture.

1. Glasgow-based artist Jim Lambie designed this dazzling floor found in the Gramercy apartment of Nyehaus Gallery's Tim Nye.
2. Yellow taped furniture takes on wild and weird shapes in the hands of artist Anon Pairot.
3. A duct-taped chair in classic silver.
4. An outdoor art installation in Brooklyn from artist Aakash Nihalan.
5. An installation from Slade Architecture. The furniture was rescued from street corners and dumpsters around Manhattan and given new life with bold stripes of duct tape.

It’s so fun in theory, but I wonder how long it lasts before duct tape’s grimy edges start to turn the look tacky. Have you used duct tape creatively in your home? Tell us the deets!

Images: 1. NY Mag, 2. via I Heart Sticky Tape, 3. Maxim, 4. via Heart and Design, 5. Slade Architecture