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Man creates cardboard recyclable furniture

(Photo: WFSB/CNN) (Photo: WFSB/CNN)

NEW HAVEN, CT (WFSB/CNN) – A Connecticut man has invented furniture that's lightweight, inexpensive, 100 percent recyclable - and made out of cardboard.

Zach Rotholtz of New Haven, CT, says he started playing with cardboard boxes as a kid and he was always fascinated by the possibilities of the material.

As his senior project at Yale University, he decided to design a chair that can also serve as a table or turn into a bookshelf - all made out of a single sheet of cardboard.

"Partly environmental, partly lightweight, partly a really cool concept, but a lot of it makes sense from the sustainability aspect," Rotholtz said.

From a chair, the next logical step was to design a bench and then a table. His company, Chairigami, has taken off from there.

"I've got an office space, I'm doing I do a lot of people's homes," Rotholtz said. "I did a whole room for a college kid."

Rotholtz custom designs and builds each piece to customers' specifications.

"I have clients come in, say, ‘Hey, I need a chaise lounge, can you make it?' OK, why not? Let's go back and design it," Rotholtz said. "One person asked me for a yoga bench, more recently a bed."

The industrial-strength cardboard can handle 240 pounds per square inch, but will it last?

"It'll last a year and a half, no problem, and that's college kids, that's as long as they need it," Rotholtz said.

No staples, no glue, just fold it up and off you go.

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