Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Looking for a Few Good Designers

Source: Sketchchair.cc
Last October I was fascinated by the idea of using technology to design and fabricate furniture. I saw a Kickstarter project by Sketchchair that made me think about how furniture is designed. I've never made furniture, but with some investigation into the world of flat pack, ready to assemble furniture I was hooked on the idea. All I needed then was some way to fabricate the furniture, and figure out how to design furniture. A huge challenge.

The big idea then struck me: How can students design and manufacture furniture for a community common space for the public to use and enjoy? 

I then wrote a grant application for Skills Canada and received enough money to buy a CNC machine that could cut out the furniture. It's on order from ShopBot and should be here in a couple weeks. The idea is to allow students to first sketch, analyze, refine many times over, then prototype their furniture models from cardboard by hand followed by thin wood/chip board first on the laser cutter.

The last and MOST IMPORTANT piece is what I'm working on now. I need your help. I don't know anything about furniture design. I want to learn with the students and connect to experts in the fields of design, woodworking, manufacturing and engineering who can give us advice along the way. We are going to employ the design process (check out IDEO's teacher toolkit) as our guide to completing this project and integrate students from my class with those in industrial arts, fashion studies, and our special needs class.

If you are someone who has design experience, who has made furniture, or knows someone who can help us with this project, please get in contact with me!  coolpoolteacher (at) gmail.com.

1 comment:

  1. Hello,
    My name is Alejandro Moreno and I got your message through a content curator tool, namely "trap.it", under the topic "furniture design". I find your project appealing.

    (PROS) I work as cabinetmaker since 1997, designing and building my own designs. My style is basically a kind of "friendly" rationalism, quite appropriate for "flat pack" and "ready to assemble". Some of the linked furniture were build and "shipped" in that way. Now I have time for other projects (you may have heard something about the poor economic situation in Spain :( ).

    (CONS?) I live on the Canary Islands, English is not my mother language and I got no formal education in designing.

    By the way, maybe you find this links interesting:


    Alejandro G. Moreno Moreno