You don’t have to be a coffee snob to know that French presses are delicate. Anyone who’s ever so much as picked up one of the java brewers knows that the glass beakers are incredibly, almost uncomfortably, thin. But Mason jars? Sure, they’re ubiquitous, and yeah, they can be a bit twee, but those babies are nothing if not sturdy. Bryan Kappa and Rob Story, the creative and business brains behind Bucket, combined the best of both into the Portland Press.
"The difficult part was finding an existing, mass-produced mason jar with a round cross-section and no lip," Story tells Co.Design. "Without that, the internals—we call them the ‘guts’—would require a very complex spring system." Their timing was fortuitous—right around the time brainstorming began, a pint-and-a-half version was introduced, giving them precisely the solution they needed to carry on.
Keeping all aspects of the concept’s construction in the Pacific Northwest was critical for the duo. Sourcing the materials—wood, wool, and steel—and producers for each of the unit’s parts took some time, but the experience introduced the pair to talented makers in their region. "If one shop didn’t have the capability to manufacture a certain component, they almost always recommended another shop in the area," Story says. Local craftspeople and artisans helped assemble everything together.
When it came time to find a platform to introduce their work and make the prototype a marketable reality, they turned to Crowd Supply. "We discovered them through word of mouth," Story says. "They handle everything from funding to pre-orders to order fulfillment to long-term sales." As such, the Kickstarter alternative is particularly suited to launching physical products, and (bonus) it’s also based in Portland. Pair it with a Mason Shaker and you’ve got a.m. and p.m. covered.
The Portland Press is Bucket’s debut, but they’re offering a lifetime warranty. As they say in their video: "A product’s life doesn’t start on the shelf, and it shouldn’t end in the trash."