Biodegradable utensils and dishes have been around for some time now, and they're often indistinguishable from their conventional, non-biodegradable counterparts. Israeli designer Ori Sonnenschein has another idea though -- to use orange peels as a locally-available, cheap and lightweight source for cheerfully-coloured kitchen accessories that are designed to biodegrade over time, rather than adding to the waste stream.
A recent graduate of Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, Sonnenschein calls his biodegradable collection Solskin, in reference to the sunny, optimistic nature of his own character and the project itself. Sonnenschein re-uses discarded orange peels, drying and molding them to the desired shapes, and uses non-toxic shellac to make it water-repellent.
During the process, Sonnenschein experimented with different kinds of sources and applications. For instance, the pulverized skins from the orange juice industry were used in one attempt to create his adhesive-free prototypes.
The variety of textures, elasticities and colours is infinite, despite the orange's simplicity. Currently, the Solskin collection includes a cup, spoon, plate, salt shaker, bottle and bowl, though Sonnenschein is looking for other ways to utilize the peels -- like casings for speakers, lighters and flashlights. Best of all, these items will retain their citrusy aroma -- inviting you to touch, smell and taste, giving life to ordinary objects.
Though it might take some time for this cool idea to catch on and be produced on a larger scale, this bright collection presents an artisanal way to create beautiful yet functional objects, out of everyday foods. For more information, visit Solskin Design.