Happy 50th birthday, cassette tape!
Today is the 50th anniversary of that most ubiquitous of 1980s cultural debris, the cassette tape!
The “compact cassette tape” made its official debut on September 14, 1963, but became a mainstay of 1980s culture as the perfect compliment to the new generation of car stereos, portable boombox stereos, and the personal Walkman.
As that crazy decade drew to a close, the CD began its rise as the dominant audio medium. Still, if you were around back then, chances are you have a box somewhere filled with dozens of badly dubbed mixtapes and regrettable music purchases. Thankfully, that menagerie of small brick-shaped plastic memories may be able to find a second life with just a little elbow grease. Here are some of our favorite DIY examples of the cassette tape reborn.
With a little bit of work and a few supplies you already have lying around, you can turn your clear (or at least translucent) cassettes into a funky retro light-source.
Here are two facts that may seem at first like they have nothing to do with one another: 1) The cassette tape has long passed its technological moment and 2) Pens and pencils still need a place to live.
Cassette tape wallet
This easy project shows how you can turn your old cassette tape into a wallet that you can carry around. Imagine the possibilities of turning your cassette single of Wu-tang's "C.R.E.A.M." into something that actually stores your cash?!
Cassette tape USB
Tapes are hard and small. So, it was probably inevitable that a USB carrier was bound to pop up sooner or later.
Cassette spool earrings
As with all things on Etsy, this pair of earrings made from old cassette tape spools walks down the very narrow line between cool and weird.
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