ISSUE 38  |  Fall Forecast

Miracle Cork: Melanie Abrantes’ Pots and Planters

September 24, 2015 3:00 PM

BY Margot Guralnick

In addition to its being water resistant, naturally antibacterial, sustainable, and recyclable, cork can be turned into all sorts of things. Oakland designer Melanie Abrantes hand turns it on a lathe and pairs it with leather to make pots and hanging planters. A graduate of the Otis College of Art and Design with a specialty in product design, Abrantes started experimenting with cork two years ago at a summer workshop at Domaine de Boisbuchet in Lessac, France. She’s been covered in cork dust ever since.

Above: Abrantes’ Modern Cork Planters come in three sizes; the small, shown here, are 5 inches tall and $84 each, plants not included. They’re shellacked on the inside and have a beeswax finish on the outside.

Above: “I’m drawn to materials that are natural and beautiful in their raw state,” says Abrantes. Her cork and leather lace Large Hanging Planter, $110, doubles as a fruit bowl.

Above: The Leather-Strap Hanging Planter is $115.

Above: Abrantes also makes 5-inch-tall, hand-turned wood vases that come with glass vial inserts for fresh flowers; $75 each. Shown here, from left: the Straight Cherry Wood Vase; Double Cherry Wood Vase; Walnut Straight Hardwood Vase; and Double Walnut Vase. Go to Melanie Abrantes to see her full line.

We also love the inventive cork designs in Ilse Crawford’s New Indoor-Outdoor Collection for Ikea. Browse our Pots & Planters posts for other favorites, including 10 Self-Watering Planters.