The Küpe Collection is crafted from used bourbon barrels from Bardstown, Kentucky, the bourbon capital of the world. To give some background on the production of bourbon, their barrels are traditionally constructed from new American white oak and charred on the inside, giving bourbon its unique flavor and coloring. Barrels are used only once to age bourbon, after which some are shipped to Scotland to make scotch. While the remaining barrels are usally discarded or sold for firewood, Uhuru repurposed this materials in a new and unique way.
The Küpe line was born when Uhuru began dismantling reclaimed barrels into individual staves, metal bands, and circular heads. They then explored how each part could be combined to create unique contemporary designs, while retaining their individual characteristics. This use of reclaimed parts spawned a new dialouge within Uhuru's process of narrative design and demonstrated the beautiful potential of material applications.