Recycling Becomes a Work of Art
BY PATTI ROTH - Special to The Miami Herald
Tara Ackerman is a professional recycler. Empty wine bottles, used paper and old record album jackets are among the tools of her trade. With artistic sensibility and a passion for reducing waste, the Plantation woman transforms toss-aways and second-hand items into pins, bracelets and home décor.
She recycles empty wine bottles into display pieces embellished with paint and paper. As a green enthusiast, Ackerman points out that her eco-friendly materials include nontoxic paints and used paper from old magazines and other similar sources.
Through her business, Green Cycle Designs, Ackerman sells her homemade jewelry and art pieces at South Florida festivals and also on the Internet. She exhibited this year at green festivals in Plantation and Sunrise, and she'll be setting up booths Nov. 14-15 at Art in the Park in Plantation and Dec. 5-6 at the Woodstock Arts & Crafts Festival in Sunrise. Ackerman's interest in preserving the planet blossomed two years ago when a friend gave her a book about easy ways to live a more green lifestyle. She set up recycling bins at her parents' home and carted the items to a public drop-off center. Instead of just adding to the piles of recyclables, Ackerman wanted to do something else. That's when her artistic and environmental passions merged.