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Item of the day: Freshly Found Christmas Tree

Freshly Found has become well-known in Durban and beyond for really creative items, from records to men’s ties, all of which are handcrafted from recycled materials . 'I am fascinated with re-inventing or re-purposing vintage or found goods.  I just thrive on the concept of making the most of what you have or can easily get hold of. I love to push creative boundaries in unexpected ways,' says owner, Denise Kiggan. The creation of this gorgeous Christmas tree is certainly an unexpected use for unwanted old books. 'Focus on iThemba, a local charity, had received a donation of books, many of which they were unable to use or sell.  They asked me if I could use them and donated a few boxes of books to me. We talked about doing some collaborative arrangement. I had wanted to try a Christmas tree as a further development of the work I do with vintage books. I spoke to Sandile Sithole, the crafter who helps me with the book folding, and discussed how we could make this tree.  He designed a simple wire frame on which we could mount the books.' They called the final creation the Biliogami Christmas Tree. We quizzed Denise about what books Freshly Found uses to create their Bilbliogami items. 'We only use second hand books - hopefully, mostly cheap trashy novels or out of date manuals. The spines must be strong and flexible and the paper cannot be too old and crumbly.  There's a whole science to sourcing suitable books I have discovered!  Lately I source books from behind the scenes at my local charity shop.  They sell the books to me that they are unable to sell in their shops:  foreign language books, slightly damaged books and really boring books!' We think the Bibliogami Christmas Tree is anything but boring, in fact, it is likely to be a great talking point for your guests over the festive season. The garland and baubles pictured are included and you can pin or peg small decorations to the tree. If you’d like to buy one, they are available at The Caboodle, 106 Bulwer Road, Glenwood, Durban; at the November and December i heart markets held on the lawns outside Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban or email Denise at denise@freshlyfound.com and she will send you an invoice. The trees cost R350 and R100 of every tree sold will be donated to iThemba.