Coffee grounds usually end up in the trash or compost. At best they become fertilizer. Spanish designer Raul Lauri hopes that will change with his Decafe collection which he debuted at last week's Salone. The products and his research explore coffee grounds as a biodegradable and renewable material.
The introductory line of table, pendant lamps, floor lamps, and decorative tableware are all made of heat and pressure treated coffee grounds. The objects are familiar and comforting in shape and aroma. The most intriguing are the table lamps shaped like mugs. They operate without a switch and are turned on and off by placing them on their accompanying base.
Worldwide, over 1.6 billion cups of coffee a day are consumed, according to the International Coffee Organization. Looking at something we forget is a waste product is the kind of creative approach designers need to find new materials, and judges of the Milan Design Week 2012 agreed. Lauri's work in developing a new sustainable composite material won this year's Salone Satellite Award.
Images: copyright Raul Delauri