‘drip-dry’ dishes

‘drip-dry’ dishes by american design studio giffin’ termeer (jess giffin and jim termeer), is born from this idea of wanting to escape the systems of racks, dishwashers, extended place settings and the intricate household rules of drying dishes. they thought about how dishes spend most of their time waiting to be used in the cupboard or waiting to be washed. at home they don’t use a drying rack, just a towel in which they wash one or two things and set them out to drip dry. what if this was all they did – sitting out to dry? what would the dishes look like then?

they chose to design three basic pieces, whose designs change our relationship to dishes, through one simple alteration. ‘drip-dry’ makes dishes more efficient in terms of their purpose. giffin’ termeer decided to ‘tip’ the plate, bowl and tumbler of the ‘drip-dry’ series, and make them self-sufficient, while at the same time animating them in a new way. now, with small tipping forms, the tableware becomes more figurative and contemplative. there is no longer a need for cupboards or dish racks. in the development of the series, they looked at naturalistic elements such as a crab stock handles found in 18th century european teapots drawn from a long tradition of asian ceramics. rounded crab stock forms, sprigs, what easily shed water, became the way in which to perch the dishes in the right orientation to literally ‘drip-dry’ after cleaning.

giffin' termeer: drip dry ‘drip-dry’ dishes with small plastic sprigs used to tip the dishes so that water can easily run off them

the first set of ‘drip-dry’ dishes were designed for the designboom NY mart, 2007 and were also exhibited in the designboom handled with care exhibition the same year. the patterns for this set were designed in CAD and printed with a 3D printer. the final stoneware dishes were produced entirely using a RAM press, glazed in off-white with a production run of 25 of each piece. the support sprigs were made from the same material as the body. while they liked the uniformity of a single material, the ‘tink’ sound of ceramic hitting the counter top was unsettling when the dishes were set down. the second chance for a re-design came about with a set they designed for the ‘pressing matter’ exhibition for the cheongu craft biennale in cheongu, korea last year. since the dishes are designed as if a dishwasher wasn’t invented, the materials didn’t have to be dishwasher-safe. because of this, along with the advances in adhesives, they decided that a plastic sprig would give a softer landing for the dishes.

giffin' termeer: drip dry the set consists of a tumbler, plate and bowl

for this new set of ‘drip-dry’ dishes, giffen’ termeer worked with ceramicist meg biddle, who hand threw the body of each piece. the throwing technique was chosen over RAM or slip casting because it is more efficient for the 10 sets they were producing with no tooling required. biddle needed only a 2D profile to use as a guide. the springs were individually modeled for each body and produced using an FDM (fused deposition modeling) rapid prototyping 3D printer. the 3D printer became a production method that matched the one-by-one process of wheel throwing. giffin’ termeer asked biddle to leave her finger marks on the thrown bodies, and as a final detail, they left the unfinished wood-grain-esque surface textures that are inherent in 3D printing on the sprigs, resulting in a fingerprint meets fingerprint aesthetic.

giffin' termeer: drip dry

giffin' termeer: drip dry ‘up close’ – you can see the ‘fingerprint’ texture of the sprig

giffin' termeer: drip dry

process of making the ‘drip-dry’ dishes:

giffin' termeer: drip dryprocess making

giffin' termeer: drip dryprocess making

giffin' termeer: drip dryfitting sprigs

giffin' termeer: drip dry

giffin' termeer: drip dryfitting sprigs attached to the dishes

giffin' termeer: drip dry ‘drip-dry’ models

giffin' termeer: drip dry ‘drip-dry’ model

giffin' termeer: drip dry preliminary models

giffin' termeer: drip dry designing the mark