Material's Kitchen Tools
A newly designed set of simple yet classy everyday tools
by Sun Bak
One pull of the kitchen drawer, and you'll probably find mismatched and neglected kitchen tools collected over the years, just taking up space. It's hard to let them go, but the "Fundamentals" set from newly launched brand Material makes it pretty enticing. Direct-to-consumer kitchenware is having a moment (from Misen's knives to Field Company's smoother-than-cast-iron skillets largely because it offers fewer unnecessary options to wade through. (A quick search for "spatula" at a major brand's website came up with 110 results.) We like that Material's set isn't too "match-y" like a lot of sets can be, yet are classy enough to use for special occasions. Additionally, each piece has been tailored for longterm ease of use. Even the wooden base has magnetic walls to keep the knives organized.
"We were inspired by life around us—and the inherent messiness," co-founder Eunice Byun tells CH. "Both Dave, my co-founder, and I love cooking, and as much as we like to believe that we have Kon-Mari'd our entire lives, the kitchen was always off limits. I had accumulated a lot of stuff from my wedding registry (my Japanese knife set that was extraordinarily expensive, and wholly under-utilized) and upon the birth of my daughter, only piled on more stuff. Dave, on the other hand, was living with his brother at the time who is a trained chef. He had drawers full of kitchenware that cost too much and required too much care. So, we recognized the need for a brand to help edit our kitchens by providing us an assortment of items that you will actually use every day, for every meal." Their research involved looking through cookbooks and blogs, as well as talking to family and friends, on what tools they kept on the counter at close reach, rather than hiding away. And while the knives are made from Japanese steel, they're able to keep the cost down by manufacturing in Southern China.
Similar to a Kickstarter, Material is offering preorders for its Fundamentals set ($175) as well as its eight-inch knife ($75), in two colorways. The only downside is you'll have to wait until at least late February for it to ship. To reward patience, the company is offering a set of three spices made in collaboration with Burlap & Barrel with any pre-order.
Images courtesy of Material