1893 Galalith

The book of science

Tom Sharp

Auguste Trillat materials science Galalith


Auguste Trillat discovered precipitating casein with formaldehyde produced an odorless, insoluble, biodegradable, antiallergenic, and nonflammable plastic.

Milk stone

With Galalith, Coco Chanel created costume jewellery for her little black dress. Combs, buttons, and knitting needles Pens, piano keys, and umbrella handles. Galalith could be produced in any color and patterned to look like amber or marble. It was cheap and safe to make, but could not be heat-molded after it set.