The Most Stunning Way To Start a Fire Since Lightning

Illustration for article titled The Most Stunning Way To Start a Fire Since Lightning

The simple form and function of a Zippo lighter has made it an incredibly iconic design. But it could soon be supplanted by Alessi if the Italian houseware manufacturer prices its new Sushi lighter to compete with the Zippo. That, or convince a Hollywood producer to have an action hero prominently use it in an upcoming blockbuster.

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Designed by Rodrigo Torres, the pocketable Sushi comes in a small selection of colors reminiscent of how KitchenAid tints its appliances, and it's no coincidence. Alessi and Torres wanted to emphasize the lighter was designed for domestic use around the home, not as a tough-as-nails outdoor accessory. And in the process it looks like they turned a mundane candle accessory into an object that's more mesmerizing to look at than a flickering flame.

Illustration for article titled The Most Stunning Way To Start a Fire Since Lightning
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[Rodrigo Torres via Behance via Notcot]

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DISCUSSION

jonnydeadman
JonnyDeadMan

Looking at a side view along the narrow side, I noticed there seems to be a slot running down the inside longish end. The only way I could see this as being more iconic than the zippo would be if when you light it, you get a line of miniature flames running along the inside rather than a point flame on top. It would presumably be easier to light something (like a cigarette) from a line of smaller burners in the wind, but it might be worse for the thumb pressing the lighter button.

If not, then I think the "tried and true" version of the Zippo is still a better design, since it sparks not simply a jet of gas but an actual wick of cotton that soaks through with fuel (efficiency over aesthetics).