Leaf Knife - Leave No Trace

A camping knife designed to reflect the cultural and ecological values of the camping enthusiast. Unlike most other knives on the market, this 100% recyclable knife has a product-service system that is safe for both the users and the environment. A camping knife designed to reflect the cultural and ecological values of the camping enthusiast. 


Project Title: 
Leaf Knife
Project Designers: 
Matt Callahan and Ari Elefterin, Parsons School of Design, The New School
Project Date: 
Jan 2017

Challenge Summary

The goal of the Cradle to Cradle Design Challenge was to eliminate the concept of “waste” by designing products with materials that may be perpetually cycled to retain their value as nutrients to fuel growing global economies.


Design Summary & Considerations

With only two materials the Leaf Knife is designed to be easily disassembled. Whether it be personal maintenance, part replacement, or end of life recycling, everything is straightforward and visible. The product service system offers users options for care and equipment while keeping all materials moving through the technological sphere.

Leaf Knife integrates two key sustainable design principles: Green Materials, in which the knife is made entirely from recycled steel and aluminium; and Product Lifecycle, whereby a quick disassembly using only a screwdriver allows for this minimal knife, of only steel and aluminium, to be easily recycled. The knife can be infinitely recycled at any municipal recycling or scrap yard.

Autodesk Fusion 360

Autodesk Fusion 360 was used throughout the project. From early prototypes through to the development of the current iteration. The straightforward feature tree and live view features, unique to Fusion, enabled the designers to iterate and collaborate freely, even when working remotely.

Designing Cradle to Cradle products involves input from a wide range of experts. Fusion’s collaboration and sharing features empowered the team to quickly and intelligently adapt to problems and expert feedback along the way.


Click here to see the full design.
Click here to see Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge winners