finest paperware

by Grace Bonney

‘Throwaway Culture’ was one of the first things I covered when I started Design*Sponge. Back in 2003 and 2004, designers in Brooklyn were constantly creating pieces that commented on the nature of so-called disposable goods. But rather than continuing to make ‘throwaway’ goods more permanent, over the past few years some artists seem to be embracing disposable paper goods. One of those artists is Rebecca Wilson- her ‘Finest Paperware‘ series is essentially a disposable paper cup line that has been designed to look like classic Wedgewood china. Made from sheets of handmade paper, each cup has embossed relief details and comes as part of a set of 12 for $29. At about $2.40 per cup, it may not be the price point most people want or expect for everyday disposable goods, but a set of these would certainly elevate a special picnic or romantic meal on the go (each set is fully recyclable). If you want to check them out in more detail you can find more info (and ordering details) right here. xo, grace

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  • I’m a re-use upcycle girl through and through, but there’s something really interesting and thought provoking about putting that much care and craftsmanship into an item that can only be used once. I like the impermanence of it. I also like that from an environmental perspective, these can be recycled or composted!

  • I agree with Laura above – I’m all for re-use and up-cycling myself, but these paper goods are so well designing. Super tongue in cheek. I like that it’s thought provoking, that you would just want to toss these after one use, and of course that these can be recycled or composted.

  • For a special party if you figure the price of rental of tableware, serving help, and clean up people, the total cost becomes so much more realistic and this would be much more uniquely decorative. Time is money and this is definitely a beautiful time saver. Would be great to have on hand for those spur of the moment patio parties. Or how about using them to make take out special and still not have to dip your hands in the sink! Enjoy

  • These are truly lovely, but I thought this article (found on Pinterest) was going to be a DIY to show me how I could make these myself! For that I’m disappointed but my curiosity, now piqued, is beginning to wonder how it could be done as a DIY project. Ideas anyone? (I live outside the US and so these are not available to me, nor could I afford them if they were. But they are truly lovely!)

  • The pieces are lovely but I have concerns about their actual use. I worked for a company that produced paperware like this and a lot went in to quality control to make sure that the print did not transfer to your food. This handmade paper looks so porous! Also, even though the materials themselves are recyclable, once they’re food-stained, can they be recycled? I know our recycler doesn’t want carryout pizza boxes if they’re caked with cheese and grease.

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