Ceramic roof tiles have been traditionally used in Japan due to their strength and durability. One might wonder as to the wisdom of having a heavy stone roof in the world's most earthquake-prone country but typhoons occur even more frequently - unless you're the Big Bad Wolf, wind won't blow away stone.

In any case, even tough old Japanese houses age to the point of demolition and this creates a new problem: what to do with all those roof tiles? Tomoko Azumi and a group of 10 designers who go by the collective name "TEN" have come up with a solution that will see roof tiles take on new lives as... roofs for houses!

Birdhouses, that is. The project uses a water-jet cutter to trim each tile to size, then fits them onto engraved side panels with images of Victorian homes.

By the way, Japanese roof tiles are not quite the same as the flat, square tiles lining your shower stall. Instead they're angled with a rounded flange rising from the peak. They're naturally suited to be either roof tiles or, individually, as birdhouse roofs. (via Designboom)