The two tableware collections, titled Tasting Thread and Nomads, were both the product of T Sakhi‘s experiments with Murano glass in a bid to achieve new textures.
Founders and sisters Tessa and Tara Sakhi incorporated metal debris into each of the pieces. They used aluminium, copper, brass and other metal powder collected from the waste streams of factories in their local area.
The Lebanese-Polish designers created them as functional objects for everyday use that would bring people together, allowing them to interact and share moments over food and drink.
Their Tasting Threads tableware collection comprises a series of colourful long and short glasses, small shot glasses, flat plates and deep bowls.
Each of the objects are coloured in a variety of bright hues chosen to look like by precious stones, ranging from alexandrite and amethyst to amber, ruby and cobalt.
The handcrafted objects are a fusion of two Mediterranean cultures. The design duo worked with local craftsmen in Venice to sculpt the Murano glass into objects that reference traditional Lebanese shapes.
«Lebanon and Italy have very similar ways of lifestyle, similar social norms, whether in social gatherings, in dining settings or their values in craftsmanship,» said the sisters. .
«We want to emphasise this strong duality with the craftsmen enriching the experience with their technique and expertise of mouth-blown Murano,» they added.
While the Tasting Threads designs feature a regular, glossy effect, the Nomad collection features a craquelure effect. A sand-blasting technique was used to create a rougher finish.
This series comprises a collection of large and small alcohol drinking flasks, or carafes, designed for all occasions from «solitary moments» to social gatherings.Related storyT Sakhi’s Lebanon pavilion uses walls to activate social interaction
«We wanted to create a universal accessory any culture can relate to: alcohol,» the duo told Dezeen. «It is a substance that disrupts the social mask imposed by social etiquettes, and reveals human emotions in its rawest forms.»
Each piece in the series is named after a human virtue or emotion: Isra (wisdom), Dalia (faith), Kalla (beauty), Mayra (rebellion), Hera (vengeance), and Frea (infidelity).
To make each of the pieces, the designers start by selecting the mixture of coloured particles that will create the overall shade of the glassware before pressing the molten Murano glass onto the particles.
The metal wires are infused into the glass when it is still hot, embedded at different temperatures to soften the material in order to fully integrate it into the glass.
«It demands meticulous work of timing and temperature levels to avoid breaking the fragile glass,» explained the designers.
«During the cooling process, the metal contracts and the glass solidifies, so it’s all about not having one action overrule the other.»
The designers were due to release a third collection alongside Tasting Threads and Nomad, however the launch was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, which led to the furnaces being closed in Venice.
When released, the third series, called I Hear You Tremble, will comprise «extra-terrestrial» glassware objects. Also incorporating aluminium waste, the pieces are made using a different technique that results in «stone-like» formations.Related storyT Sakhi creates public spaces using Beirut’s security infrastructure
«It is all about trial and error, we experiment with raw materials, and try to test the strength and limits of each material with different manipulations,» said the sisters.
«Our techniques aspire a creation associated with chaos, mystery, randomness and precision, spirit and matter and finally, natural vs man-made, emphasizing on nature’s mutation with human intervention.»
«We learned how to embrace surprises and accidents, which are undeniable for the evolution of any process,» they added.
Tessa and Tara Sakhi are not the only designers to embrace imperfections when making glassware. Stockholm-based Studio EO created a collection of colourful vases made from glass and fragments of discarded marble found in quarries.
Describing the creations as «part chaos and part control», studio founder Erik Olovsson re-shapes the broken parts with a hammer and chisel to make them fit for their glass counterpart.