Colouring coasters

Colouring coasters

Colouring coasters

It's come to a point in design and production of the coasters we create, that there are more painted coasters than variants with natural finishes.  It's not something we had consciously worked towards and was an interesting realisation.

The reasons why it has happened seem to be twofold. The first, is that it allows for greater creative freedom. I covered the use of masking and painting in a previous post. In that example we felt that we couldn't realise the logo artwork unless we used paint. Interestingly, 2 out of the three 'looks' for that coaster were created using laser techniques on the natural wood.

The second reason is because of the wood itself. We love using bamboo here. It's hard wearing, sustainable and has a really interesting grain when burnt. You can see the development of the fibres and how the grass grew and that's great. It can also be a little bit of an issue. Some coaster blanks are cut so that they include very obvious growth phases on the bamboo. This means that within a single coaster you can have two or three distinct strips of grain colour and this can be another thing that impacts the design of the coasters. It's a look that can be divisive. Some people think that it might distract from the design, where others (ourselves included) think it's all part of the natural aspect of the material we use.

Painting the coasters can lessen this harsh transition from one grain colour to another. A surface coat of white can give a contrast boost and spraying the engraved sections black (or any other colour) can remove the issue entirely. It's a bit of a shame tho, hiding what makes Bamboo (and the idea of wooden coasters) so unique.

It is, however, something we're going to experiment with going forward, so we'll see. At the end of the day it's about what is best for each design.