Sunflowers and other biomaterials have never been looked so beautiful, but Eindhoven-based designer Thomas Vailly has found a way to transform the remaining parts of a sunflower crop into something extremely astounding.
She has made a stunning marble-like material out of this that can be further used to create home objects, throw-away tableware, acoustic panels, office furniture and packaging.
Thomas Vailly, founder of Studio Thomas Vailly (STV) collaborated with scientists from École Nationale Supérieure des Ingénieurs en Arts Chimiques et Technologiques to create foam, varnish and glue from the by-products of a sunflower crop such as stalks and squeezed seeds.
Vailly wanted to use every part of the sunflower crop, whether it is seed or stalk to create both non-synthetic binder and a non-hazardous varnish or sustainable material. In an interview, the designer said she wanted to be creative with the resources, which are wrongly called waste. She said that we should make the maximum use of what is in front of your nose.
Instead of leaving the stalks or seeds to decompose in the field, Studio Thomas Vailly separates the bark and marrow of the stalks, which are then heated and pressed into hardboard. Later on, they mix the marrow with water-based glue to make a foam-like material.
And the glue taken out from the seeds is used to stick the different bio-based materials, which are subsequently layered with sunflower glaze to make them water-resistant.
The prime quality of this innovative material is that it looks incredibly gorgeous. The foam and hardboard have an eye-catching green and white pattern that seems like small colourful stones that have been arranged into a rippled green slab of terrazzo.