Mako Design’s List of Unique Materials to Use in Product Design

by | Apr 28, 2020 | Design, Designing, Industrial Design, Product Design

One of the best aspects of design is how so many different aspects can be changed in order to make some of the most well made and unique product designs. Aspects such as the concept design, CAD sketch, placement, electrical components, and material all play into effect about how the product design will look, feel, and most importantly, function! A huge portion of the product design conceptualization and process that matters to both the inventor and designer a lot is the material of which their product design will be made of. Another great aspect of using certain or special materials is that it can add both a novelty and appeal factor to your product that reels audiences and consumers in when contemplating the worth and value of your product over another. Since we love to work on quality product designs that are both unique and work well, the team at Mako Design has listed some of their favorite and unique materials that work well to enhance and create a quality product designs.

Gypsum Crystal

If you want to take your designs to the next level and create a more quality product design, consider using Gypsum! Also known as selenite crystal, gypsum is chemically made of calcium, sulfur bound to oxygen, and water to make a material that popularly used in decorations and constructions. Its use is dated back to Egyptian times as the material is famously used in furniture and wall panels, elevating the appearance of interior design products and projects. Some of the best features of using Gypsum as a material within your product design is that it has a beautiful finish that gives surfaces a translucent look. Gypsum is a unique material that can not only be integrated into furniture and décor but also products in which a more glass-like feel and look is needed to help elevate its look, making it a popular choice for modern quality product designs.

How to Use Straw Marquetry for a Quality Product Design

An interesting way to use design is to take traditional materials and make them look as extravagant as possible to elevate and revolutionize both the material and design of the product. Straw Marquetry is a special technique that takes from wood marquetry. Using a practice from the 17th century, straw marquetry involves mimicking different shades of wood, wheat, or oat straw that is split and then soaking it into cold, warm, or hot water. This helps creates a special dye to the straw that creates is a major appeal in the material. The Sandrine then opens and flattens, applying to each piece of start to create a beautiful finish that is great for pieces of furniture or quality product design pieces. One of the best features of this material is how beautiful its finish is and the multiple unique patterns that can be made from linear to more complex scales of ‘bursts.’ The straws’ ability in being able to be dyed also makes the material easy to manipulate with color for a more vibrant and unique look that can be used in home pieces, décor, and art.


An interesting way to boost the aesthetics of your design is using more than one material to enhance its overall look and feel. Parchment is a material that comes in a wide variety that can be used in many different ways for product designs. Although the material itself is too fragile and thin to be used as the main base or composition of a product, it can be layered on top as a surface material to bring detail, texture, and novelty. Parchment is a soft material that is typically used in furnishing but can also work for designs that feature light as it reflects well, making it a choice material for lampshades, light scones, or room screens. Incorporating parchment even as a textured aesthetic is luxurious ways of adding a better feel to your quality product design making it more unique to handle or is perfect to apply to products in which its main function revolves around light.

Mica in Quality Product Design

Mica is one of the oldest materials known, dating back to use since prehistoric times. What makes mica and gives it its name is that it has a sheen to it that makes it look like it glitters. Mica comes in two forms, natural and bonded. Natural mica is mostly used on vertical surfaces and popularly used in furniture designs or panels. Whereas bonded mica is when natural mica is bonded with shellac to allow for larger pieces that can be used for a greater number of design possibilities. An example of how bonded mica can be used in quality product designs is how it is an exceptional material for furniture design such as tabletops because of how well it works as a flat surface.

Want to learn more about the impact of choosing the right materials for your product? Check out this blog on materials here!

If you have a great new invention and you’d like to learn more about this process, get in touch with MAKO here and visit our website to find out more. Feel free to give us a call at 1-888-MAKO and we can set you up on a call with our product analyst!

Article Author: MAKO Design + Invent

Article Author: MAKO Design + Invent

Company Team

MAKO Design + Invent is a full-service consumer product development firm servicing both high-growth corporate manufacturers and invention startups. With a 25-person team across 3 offices (Austin, England, Toronto), MAKO has complete in-house industrial design, mechanical engineering, and electrical engineering design and prototyping services. To assist our start-up inventor clients, we also have a subsidiary branch called Mako Invent that, in addition to above, helps start-ups with patenting, strategy, marketing, and sales/distribution for all consumer product categories. For our corporate clients, MAKO Design develops world-class consumer electronics designs through our industrial, mechanical, and electrical design teams.



Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

To comment, please first type in the 5 numbers below so we know you're not a robot 🙂


The founding and leading physical product Industrial Design, Electrical Engineering, & Mechanical Design firm taylored to startups, inventors, and small product businesses. Offices from coast-to-coast in Austin, Miami, San Francisco, & Toronto.




For Small Businesses & Manufacturers

Click below to find out more about our full suite of in-house industrial, mechanical, and electrical design, engineering, and development services tailored to established physical product development companies.

For Inventors & Startups

Have an invention idea? We have developed hundreds of products for startups in addition to providing end-to-end solutions to get our inventor clients from Idea to Stores Shelves! We are here to help.

Ready for MAKO to turn YOUR product idea into a MARKET SUCCESS?

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This