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| Designbest editorial staff

"Z

ur schönen Linde” is an unconventional vintage furniture warehouse, studio and showroom, located a stone’s throw away from Karlsruhe, the German city nearest to the easternmost point of France.
Certainly, we remember all the pieces of exercise equipment in our school gym: pommel horse (help!), mattresses (luckily), parallel bars (let’s not even go there). In a modest old industrial warehouse, Andreas Gröbel and a team which includes master craftsman, saddle maker, blacksmith and carpenter, upcycles old gym equipment which is gradually being thrown out by schools. What’s more, he turns it into eccentric and amazingly functional pieces for homes, offices and the catering industry.

 

The Zur schönen Linde warehouse, studio and showroom

The Zur schönen Linde warehouse, studio and showroom, gets its name from a previous site, which was a disused tavern called “At the beautiful linden tree”.

 

Although perfectly functional, this equipment lost its chief purpose as it was no longer in line with health and safety regulations, and for a number of years it simply ended up in an incinerator. So, the clever upcycling of these pieces, made from top quality materials like heavy-duty timber and leather, gives them a new lease on life. 

 

vintage artefacts: the old tin signs

Andreas Gröbel (left-hand side, on a pommel horse), who shied away from sports growing up, has turned gym equipment into something definitely comfier. 

Right-hand side, behind the bar counter, one of the vintage artefacts he likes to collect: old tin signs.

 

Andreas Gröbel, who trained first as a decorator and then as a blacksmith “to be able to make things as well, not just putting them on display”, has a functional talent with a slight anarchic soul. As a blacksmith he built stands for fairs and events, he gradually started to design them and in the end, was running whole events singlehandedly. Therefore, knowing how to set events up and source affordable props became vital when Andreas once again changed profession and started turning upcycled shelves into modular systems. These were his first steps in the world of upcycling.

 

Safety mattresses are turned into indestructible footstools

Safety mattresses are turned into footstools. Indestructible blue cubes with leather corners, designed to soften the edges and there’s also a handle for carrying the piece around.

A pommel horse with chopped legs is now a comfy bench

A pommel horse with chopped legs is now a comfy bench (left-hand side image). Road work cable-coilers have been cleaned-up, lacquered and turned into tables and coffee tables in all shapes and sizes (right-hand side image).

Old parallel bars and tumbling bars are now a breakfast bar.

Old parallel bars and tumbling bars are now a breakfast bar, which uses and old gym horse as a stool. Right-hand side, in the background, letters from an old sign which spells “courage” in German (Mut).

A coffee shop built on a modular platform and upcycled gym equipment as furniture. Zur schönen Linde designs and hires out temporary structures for all kinds of events.

Left-hand side, wall bars painted white are now shelves for glasses.

A reception desk built using old gym chests

The foyer of a sports medicine centre with reception desk built using old gym chests.

 

Zur schönen Linde has everything from metal shelves to upcycled gym equipment and even one or two great design classics. Andreas Gröbel restores and gives a new life to anything he can find another use for, pieces with a story to tell, which were built using top quality materials. And how could you not appreciate that the old solid timber chest and the infamous indestructible gym horse in thick leather will never again end up in an incinerator?

 

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Design project

Zur schönen Linde

Warehouse, studio and showroom
Karlsfeldstraße 16 – 19, 76297 Stutensee - Friedrichstal, Germany
Tel: 00 49 (0) 172 728 57 02

E-mailhallo@zurschoenenlinde.de

By appointment only
+49 (0) 172 728 57 02

www.zurschoenenlinde.de

Photos:
Credits: Markus Baron, Konstantin Göbel, Christian Ernst
Courtesy Zur schönen Linde

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