Some conscientious coffee fans might consider where their coffee comes from: it is fair trade, direct trade and sustainably harvested? But most coffee lovers probably don't think twice where their coffee filters might go. That's where Vilma Farrell, a former journalist from Brazil who's now living in NYC, comes in. Farrell goes around collecting used coffee filters from cafés to create these one-of-a-kind lampshades -- subtly stained by coffee and water-based paints.
Farrell, who had two young daughters at home, began making these lamps under the moniker Lampada back in 2011 as a way to fulfill her creative urge. Her love of coffee and lighting came together in a happy union of handcrafted lampshades made with recycled coffee filters. She says:
People usually are amazed how something that normally goes to the garbage can become a beautiful piece of art. Handcrafting a coffee filter lampshade is time consuming. It takes days of work but is amazingly rewarding-- especially when a lamp is finished, the light switch hit, and I can see how beautifully the light filters through the shade.
After collecting the coffee filters at her local Starbucks (primarily because they use larger, industrial-sized filters), Farrell hand-paints them with various colour patterns, cuts them into strips and weaves them into cut wire frames. After a lot of work, the result is a rustic yet modern look, like a contemporary version of a stained glass pendant lamp, thanks to the interesting geometric patterns of the overlapping strips and colours.
Farrell is now also creating flowery works of blooming art on canvas with used coffee filters, and her lampshades can be seen in restaurants and homes in cities like New York City, San Francisco and more. It's neat how a discarded item can become an artful treasure for illumination; to see more, visit Lampada on Etsy and Facebook.