Swedish design makes castor oil cool

bioplastic desk lamp
© Margaret Badore

TreeHugger visits New York during Design Week, catching the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF), Wanted Design, and other exhibits and activities.

Swedish design company Wästberg has a history of creating designs that incorporate unusual bio-based materials. At the 2011 International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF), they showed a paper desk lamp created from wood pulp and bio-based plastic, made from corn or sugarcane.

At this year's ICFF, Wästberg's Dirk Winkel has presented a lamp that uses a plastic made with castor bean oil. Plastics derived from castor oil are more eco-friendly because they don't use fossil fuels in the process of production. Called the Winkel w127, the lamp uses LED lights that are designed to shine for 50,000 hours.

castor bean oil plastic© Margaret Badore
"Making products out of plastic also involves being conscious of the responsibility for our environment," Winkel writes on Wästberg's site. He continues:

"The chosen material does not stop here: in this lamp, we are using a plastic that is based on over 60% biologically sourced material, which is castor oil, taken from the castor plant which does not compete with worldwide food production due to different agricultural requirements."

The sleek design is available in two heights and three colors: red, white and black. For additional energy savings, the light turns itself off after five hours, just in case someone forgets to turn the dimmer switch all the way off.

Swedish design makes castor oil cool
Dirk Winkel's slick desk lamp uses a bioplastic free of fossil fuel.