Recently I started working at a new office in Kyoto, Japan. There was plenty of space available, but one problem, no desk. Another problem, no money. Even if I had extra money, I would hate to see the materials wasted in a desk, which is basically impossible to recycle. Also, I have no car to pick up a desk.
So, what does one do when one needs an item? Make it! And if possible, make it using the things you have available to you locally. I've always been fascinated with bamboo. It's light, strong, modular, and super sustainable. Although actually not so sustainable if it's been covered in formaldahyde and shipped halfway across the planet to your house (click here for more info on that).
For all these reasons I decided to go with bamboo for my standing desk. I had seen a few natural bamboo forests around the outskirts of Kyoto and figured I could cut some of dem' trees down and use 'em!
Beforehand I did some research on bamboo rope joints. I wanted to save money and keep it natural by minimizing the use of screws or metal hardware. This rope is commonly available in Japan, extremely cheap, made only of plant fiber, and is designed for bamboo joints.
All in all 1 day to gather resources, 1 day to assemble, 3500yen (about $35) Most of that was spent on the wood which I purchased from Tokyu Hands. Zero packaging, fuel, or waste. When I'm done with the desk, I will simply dissasemble and return it to the forest.
Special thanks to Giles at Vitei for letting me use the space and build this crazy thing.