Sustainable interior materials designer Kirei released Air Baffle, an acoustic ceiling baffle made from recycled shoes and water bottles. The design was inspired by the Nike Air Max and combines acoustic properties of recycled PET felt with a soft filling made from Nike Grind, which is a mix of recycled materials made from Nike’s end-of-life footwear.

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Gray ceiling baffles overlooking an office room

These baffles feature a window that allows you to see the sustainable filling. John Stein, president of Kirei, said that this is the highest performing and most sustainable product yet from the company. By reducing waste and supporting a circular product life cycle, Kirei hopes to pioneer a more sustainable way of recycling foam and other products for reuse in high-end interior design.

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A gray ceiling baffle with a sneaker on top of it

Product designer Michael DiTullo created Kirei’s Air Baffle, pulling from over 20 years of experience creating iconic products for brands, including Google, Honda and Converse. DiTullo contributed to footwear design, packaging direction, ad campaigns and brand positioning for Nike before becoming a creative director at Kirei since 2019. This unique experience in acoustics and footwear led to an unprecedented approach to acoustic foam for a different purpose.

Green ceiling baffle above a front desk area where a woman sits

“In my career, I have worked on hundreds of shoes for Nike, Jordan, Converse and other brands,” DiTullo said. “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.” 

Three green ceiling baffles

As a result, Air Baffle is made from 12 millimeter of EchoPanel and can come fully enclosed or with the window for peeking on the contents. The windows are made with Class A fire-rated PETG, a co-polyester resin, which is GREENGUARD indoor air quality certified. Each baffle contains 40% pre-consumer recycled content and are 100% recyclable, qualifying for LEED MR Credit 4 and IEQ Credit 8/1 and 8.2 (daylight and views).

A gray ceiling baffle with a sneaker in front of it

You install the baffles using suspension cables and mounting hardware with no other assembly required. EchoPanel is low VOC and made from Red List Free materials, made from 60% recycled PET, which diverts 235 single-use plastic bottles from landfills and the ocean. Woven Image has designed this plastic made from recycled bottles since 2004. Since then, the company has saved over 5,505 tons of PET plastic or 275 million plastic bottles from the landfill. Nike has recycled 130 million pounds of Nike Grind fill for partners since 1992.

+ Kirei

Images via Kirei