Here’s an example of how an experienced industrial designer can connect two disparate industries for mutual benefit. Michael DiTullo, who cut his teeth designing sneakers for Nike, now runs his own ID firm. Among his current clients are Kirei USA, a California-based manufacturer of interior acoustic solutions, like ceiling baffles. And DiTullo’s design of Kirei’s new Air Baffle uses a rather unexpected fill: Nike Grind.
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The Air Baffle’s skin is felt is made from recycled water bottles. The Nike Grind filling is the resultant fluffy material made from grinding up Nike’s end-of-life footwear. And in a nod to the classic Nike Air Max, the Kirei baffles feature racetrack-shaped windows through which the Grind is visible.
“The Air Baffle is a window to the future of acoustics,” says John Stein, President of Kirei. “This is Kirei’s highest performing and most sustainable product yet. Air Baffle is one more step towards a sustainable future, reducing waste and supporting a circular product life cycle with Nike Grind.”
“In my career, I have worked on hundreds of shoes for Nike, Jordan, Converse, and other brands,” DiTullo says. “It was a real joy to design a product that helps rescue those shoes from the landfill at the end of their useful life as footwear and find a new, long-lasting use case for them as a visually striking architectural acoustic product.”
The Air Baffle comes in 40″, 48″, 72″ or 96″ lengths and is available in 33 colors. Learn more here.