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Sorapot

Below are the words of Joey Roth – the designer. And a really interesting video about the design and manufacturing process.

Sorapot from Kevin Rose on Vimeo.

The world is a collection of small, beautiful things that are so detailed, they seem like miniature worlds, yet so ordinary they’re often left unnoticed. I designed Sorapot to emphasize one of my favorite- the unfurling of tea leaves. Sorapot suspends the process of tea making in a glass tube a few centimeters above your tabletop. Unlike standard teapots that confine tealeaves in a small mesh basket, your leaves will have full run of Sorapot’s interior as they unfurl and change the hot water into tea. You might even see a tea-colored shadow cast by sunlight that passes through the tube.

Sorapot’s vaulting arch and curved geometry belie its industrial toughness. Made from investment-cast stainless steel, borosilicate glass (Pyrex), and food-grade silicone, your Sorapot will only look better as you use it. My dream is to find a well-loved, well-used Sorapot in an antique shop fifty years from now, and I designed with this image constantly on my mind.

Sorapot’s stainless steel backbone is made using the same process as jet turbine blades and space shuttle components. Investment casting, also called lost wax, is one of the world’s first ways to form metal, yet it’s still used when precision and strength are critical. Investment casting costs more, but it imbues the Sorapot with a certain feel that’s unachievable any other way. Visit Wikipedia for more about investment casting.

Sorapot encompasses my two approaches to sustainability: design for patina and wear, and design for
impermanence. As you use your teapot, it will acquire a patina based on how you hold it, how you clean it, and the type of tea you use. The uncoated stainless steel will develop a sheen where you grasp it, and will gradually become more matte in other areas. Over time, a completely unique gradient of surface shine will form over your Sorapot’s body, making it more valuable and personal than the day you took it out of its package.

I took an opposite, yet still sustainable approach with the packaging, designing its shape and choosing materials with impermanence in mind. It’s made from post-consumer recycled cardboard and molded pulp- exactly the same material as egg crates. Instead of hiding these materials behind a layer of glossy paper (as is often done with retail packaging), I tried to articulate the cardboard’s natural beauty as much as possible, using its fluting and imperfections as central design elements. The package is fastened with natural jute rope, and avoids the use of tape and staples

Click here for the Sorapot website