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In discussion with Atticus Durnell

Design Guild Mark - January 9, 2020 - 0 comments

Atticus Durnell

Atticus Durnell has been on a mission to make the world view coffee differently since graduating from the University for Creative Arts in Rochester in Product Design in 2018.

Passionate about sustainability, Atticus believes that designers hold responsibility for the future of our planet.

To that end, he created a sustainable material called That’s Caffeine, which makes use of some of the millions of tonnes worth of coffee ground waste sent to landfill each year.

He hopes his work will have a global impact on future energy and waste reduction. Last year the innovation was recognised with a Design Guild Mark in the Textiles, Wall Coverings, Surfaces, Carpets and Floor Coverings category.

With Atticus having recently begun a Master’s Degree in Biodesign at London’s Central Saint Martins to enable him to continue to make strides in material innovation, we caught up with the Design Guild Mark holder for a chat.

Who is your design hero?

Dieter Rams and Naoto Fukasawa for their simplistic approach to design.

When did you first decide you were going to be a designer?

I’ve been interested in how things are made since my childhood. Back then I didn’t know about industrial design and was aspiring to become an architect. After unsuccessfully applying to university, instead of waiting until the next year, I looked for alternatives and then found out that the side projects of mine were the definition of industrial design.

What was your first big break in the industry?

During New Designers 2018 my designs caught the attention of Media10 which offered me a place at 100% Design where I received a Design Fresh Award.

The eco-friendly five

What was the first product you ever designed?

During my teenage years I tinkered in lots of DIY projects, but to pinpoint the first product would be a foldable stool.

What do you enjoy about being a designer?

Indirectly influencing people with the products I design and being able to design an item that helps fulfil someone’s dreams.

Which design are you most proud of?

Seeing as all my interests and work are combined within That’s Caffeine, I must say this one.

What is your creative process?

There is no rule to it. Every project is different, but what they all have in common is me tuning into the situation where those products would be used, trying to understand the problem to solve it better.

What influences you?

Basically, everything that surrounds me. There is a lot of inspiration, you just need to open your eyes and look around.

Is there a product you wish you’d designed?

Something iconic, I would like to test my skills and design a piece of technology or automobile. That would be very interesting, the entire process is fascinating. Also, products that require a team of designers, working with larger group of creatives, is something I always look forward to.


For more information about Atticus Durnell, go to

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