Upholstery techniques, the natural beauty of wood grain & a love of tactile surfaces.
UNIQUE PROPERTIES / PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
The Quilt chair is an investigation into the union of soft textural form language and hard materials. A play on a traditional quilted pattern, the design pairs digital modelling and CNC technology with hand finishing techniques in order to push the limits of how we perceive wooden surfaces.
OPERATION / FLOW / INTERACTION:
Eye catching and unusual, the chair begs to be touched. As you sit the seat back gives just enough to allow for settling in, but not so much as to make one question the structure. It is very strong. Aside from being visually engaging the contoured surfaces have a massaging effect. Very comfortable.
PROJECT DURATION AND LOCATION:
Fall of 2010. 6 weeks from start to finish. Providence, RI USA
FITS BEST INTO CATEGORY:
Furniture, Decorative Items and Homeware Design
PRODUCTION / REALIZATION TECHNOLOGY:
Cut files for the CNC milled American Cherry hardwood surfaces were created with digital modeling software. Slotted tabs welded to the frame accommodate expansion of the chair seat while welds at the three way junctions allow the vertical frame members to flex outward for expansion of the chair back. Threaded inserts in the wooden components receive machine bolts for easy connection to the frame. Detachable stretchers provide for quick disassembly into two profiles so that the chair can be packed flat for shipping or storage. Turned brass feet thread into the bottoms of the legs to help protect flooring surfaces.
SPECIFICATIONS / TECHNICAL PROPERTIES:
585mm Depth x 460mm Width x 785mm Height
Chair can pack flat in a box that is 610mm x 815mm x 100mm
Quilt Chair, Quilted Chair, Quilted Cherry Chair, CNC Chair, Textured Surface Chair
In order to design and fabricate a chair that was comfortable, durable and visually engaging, I studied ergonomics, structure and form. Building a fully adjustable mock up that could explore geometric configurations was the key to finding comfortable angles and examining strength and stability. Gathering images from digital and print sources allowed me to choose a direction that would end up incorporating a simplicity of line with a complexity of surface.
Hands down the most difficult part of the development of this chair was standing by the decision to make an opulent object that focused on communicating the possibilities of pairing technology with traditional materials, rather than focusing on sustainability and cost effectiveness. From a technical standpoint the challenge was to not let the limitations of equipment and software compromise the overall aesthetic vision. Installing threaded inserts at compound angles into curved surfaces was no picnic either. The benefit of having gone through the full scale prototype construction process, is that the concept is now proven and ready to manufacture.
TEAM MEMBERS (1) :
Robert William Wells, 2011.