Looking like a painted wooden column sliced diagonally in half with a samurai sword, the Swing Bin is one of the most beautiful trash bins we have ever seen.
It's also a feat of creative construction. The Swing Bin is not screwed or wired together. It consists of just two parts: a smooth plastic base and a perfectly balanced wooden lid that swings open and shut silently.
Japanese designer Shigeichiro Takeuchi first created the sleek, sculptural Swing Bin in 2009. Imagining an elegant wastebin with the minimum number of components, Takeuchi figured out the exact angles that would allow the Swing Bin's lid to balance perfectly, allowing it to close firmly yet quietly with just a simple push. By 2010, Takeuchi had several working prototypes, and by 2011, the Swing Bin had won numerous design awards from the likes of Wallpaper and Monocle.
There was only one problem. The Swing Bin was tough to mass produce. To meet his specifications, Takeuchi discovered that the Swing Bin had to be manufactured by highly skilled craftsmen who would hand-finish the welded areas of the design to achieve the smooth aesthetic he desired.
Having spent the last few years investigating how best to manufacture the bin, Takeuchi has at last found a Japanese factory that will help bring the Swing Bin to market. He's now taking preorders for the Swing Bin in white or black on Kickstarter, starting at $65. Not a bad price for a trash bin that would look perfectly at home in Walter Gropius's office.
Units are expected to ship to backers in November. Don't try to use the Swing Bin in your kitchen though: since the design doesn't accommodate trash bags very well, the Swing Bin is best used as a waste paper basket.