“Just participating in society with our aid, CoffeeGRIP is the tool that makes drinking coffee and tea the most natural thing in the world for people with rheumatism and muscle diseases.”

The CoffeeGRIP aid, for people with a muscle disease or rheumatism.

In 2008, Alexander’s girlfriend Linda Schippers worked as an occupational therapist in training at a rheumatism center in Amsterdam. There, she came into contact with young rheumatism patients.

People who sometimes encounter obstacles in society that can be overcome by developing aids.

Linda noticed that for some clients, holding a coffee cup by the handle simply wasn’t feasible. To solve this, they would prescribe drinking cups with larger handles, often made of plastic, big, bulky, and above all, ugly. This not only pointed out that there was something wrong but also clashed with the fact that the clients were just young, trendy individuals.

Our challenge: Develop a drinking aid that fits 100% of cups with handles and preferably also provides better grip for a teacup without causing pain to the user. With Linda’s idea in mind, we got to work.

The task: Create a trendy, lightweight, compact, safe, and affordable drinking aid for coffee and tea.

Since then, we’ve gone through many prototypes, made with our 3D printers and in-house production techniques. Our goal of fitting 100% of coffee cups is a huge challenge. But it’s one we’re happy to take on.

Interactive 3D model, move the model with your mouse or fingers, double-click for full screen view.

Development of our CoffeeGRIP aid idea

Despite appearing to be a simple task, it turned out not to be as straightforward as initially thought. With this product and its requirements, we found ourselves facing a challenging puzzle, filled with conflicting demands, production techniques, investments, and cost-price challenges.

Our initial idea was to create CoffeeGRIP from a single piece of cast PU (polyurethane), a single-handle model. However, as a prototype, it was too difficult to place on a cup with one hand, so the search continued. We explored a complex idea with up to 8 parts, hard and soft, to intricately shaped products made from a single component.

During this project, we gained experience in making molds, low-pressure PU (polyurethane) casting in different hardnesses, silicone casting, and epoxy. We use our 3D printers to create the complex molds ourselves. Currently, we have a version made from multiple materials, 3D printed, and it seems to work well. But achieving compatibility with 100% of all cups remains a challenge.

In our view, the design and product can always be improved, so we are still refining the design. We hope to create a product that is mostly suitable for injection molding, with a small part that is 3D printed. This way, we provide you with a custom-made, unique, and perfectly fitting aid!

Our goal is to bring comfort and relief to those who can benefit greatly from it due to the conditions they suffer from. A functional, custom-made aid that allows people to participate in society without signaling that they are unwell. Just enjoy a cup of coffee or tea with friends like everyone else.

Once our CoffeeGRIP aid is ready for commercial rollout, it will be available in our webshop.


Year: 2008-2020

Client: ABID Internal project

Specification: CoffeeGRIP is a custom-made 3D printed concept using both hard and soft materials.