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Evolution of an Icon

KeepCup created and continues to lead the global shift toward eliminating single-use plastic in favour of reusable coffee cups. Their products are recognised around the globe and have become an iconic symbol of good design. In 2020, KeepCup engaged Cobalt to develop a new premium range of cups with the aim to keep drinks hotter for longer.

The solution was Thermal – a range of dual wall, vacuum insulated stainless steel cups that keep drinks hot for over 1 hour and cold for 6. Stainless steel was an obvious material choice; its durability, thermal retention and purity of taste are among the reasons why it is ideal for crafting into a reusable drinks vessel. Stainless steel is also 100% recyclable, remains stain and odour free and does not readily degrade over time – unlike its plastic counterpart.

The thermal range was designed to ensure compatibility with existing KeepCup lids to ensure compatibility for users with existing cups, while ensuring a leak-proof, sealed unit once assembled. A range of three sizes was developed to meet barista standard heights and volumes and ergonomic outer shape, while incorporating the distinctive visual design elements to ensure these products fit seamlessly into the KeepCup product family.

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Design Achievements






The Team We believe good design happens by expert people working as a team.

Kate Bednarz Project Leader

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Josh Bell

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Thao Nguyen


Steve Martinuzzo

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Cobalt design team holding KeepCup products

We value Cobalt’s design perspective, technical expertise & their understanding of our business values.

Abigail Forsyth  KeepCup Co-founder and CEO Abigail Forsyth portrait

Testing and Quality Assurance To ensure 'Thermal' met performance expectations, we tested hundreds of parameters throughout the manufacturing process

Product dimensional checks

Leak testing

Product life-time cycle testing

Temperature performance evaluation

Other Work