Designers find inspired ways to use traditional materials without tapping the ever-popular digital manufacturing

In recent years, composites and synthetics have largely defined what many characterize as innovative materials. A collection of designers at NYCxDesign 2015 looked to add a new twist to materials we think of as traditional.

The objects they created showcased a combination of both design and material thinking. Each of the examples we found has a distinctive visual and tactile quality. 3D printing may be able to produce a customized part, but the process lacks a human touch which makes the end products still feel less special. The following work includes varying degrees of the makers touch influenced by the rebooted materials they chose. Each shows the extra level of value that comes from a personalized touch over something churned out by a machine.

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