Designing for children always represented an interesting challenge. With children’s products the challenge is a lot to do with how they can stand the test of time in order to get the maximum usage, whilst at the same time be adaptable, functional, fun and easy to use. The pod was partly inspired by this challenge as much as a personal desire to create interesting piece for my own children.
UNIQUE PROPERTIES / PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
IO Pod is an all in one space for children to sleep, store and study. It has been conceived with an ease of assembly in mind and can be configured in numerous ways including a bunk bed, two separate single beds, a top bed and desk area beneath as well as a bed and desk separately in order to suit a family’s evolving needs. The engineering behind the concept enables parents to easily convert it whilst providing children with opportunities to enjoy it and treasure it as they grow.
OPERATION / FLOW / INTERACTION:
One of the key advantages of the piece is in the ease of its assembly. With a minimum number of components each of the beds consists of just four end sections, four side panels and two bases. All components are secured with concealed fixings. The bases are secured to the end pieces and side panels with a series of hex head screws, this requires just one alen key tool to construct the individual beds. Once the beds are assembled a ladder is fixed into position with six locating wooden dowels. When in its bunk pod configuration the top and bottom bunks are easily fixed together with just eight screws to complete the assembly. The lower bunk is easily configured from a bed to a desk by relocating the lower bunk base and securing it in place with a series of screws.
PROJECT DURATION AND LOCATION:
The project took eight months to complete from its initial concept through design process, testing and modifications to the final product. The piece was produced in Europe and tested by Fira, Furniture Industry Research Association in London. IO Pod was first shown in London during London Design week in 2013.
FITS BEST INTO CATEGORY:
Furniture, Decorative Items and Homeware Design
PRODUCTION / REALIZATION TECHNOLOGY:
IO Pod is conceived with sustainable thinking applied to its design. The multifunctional aspect of the design ensures that the product can be used over a long period of time and in many different ways. Scandinavian birch plywood was chosen because of its strength, warmth and durability with other versions also having an outer laminate layer providing extra protection. The manufacturing process of the piece combines skilled, local craftsmanship with the latest CNC technology with the intention to minimise waste and to achieve high quality throughout all aspects of design. The product was tested by FIRA and it complies with all relevant UK and European safety regulations.
SPECIFICATIONS / TECHNICAL PROPERTIES:
Material: Plywood and High Pressure Laminate
230cm (W), 94cm (D), 155cm (H)
Bunk Bed, Modular, Versatile, Adaptable, Multi-functional
IO Pod was created as a response to a request from my daughter who wanting a bunk bed. Initial research was then carried out to understand better how particular design can be used and how it can fit into children’s and parents lives. Research into safety regulations and testing was carried out which resulted in close collaboration with FIRA testing facility in London. We wanted our product not only to be versatile and functional but safe too.
The challenge was to combine all our key objectives into a single design that children would grow up with and use through various stages of their life, yet at the same time ensure that the engineering behind the concept enables easy assembly and conversion for parents. Another challenge for the design was that we had to adhere to strict safety regulations during design process and at the same time ensure that the integrity of our vision for the piece was preserved down to every cut and bend.
TEAM MEMBERS (2) :
Mina Panic and Carlo Filippo Negri
Image 1 #: Photographer Karl Anderson, 2016
Image 2 #: Photographer Karl Anderson, 2016
Image 3 #: Photographer Karl Anderson, 2016
Image 4 #: Photographer Karl Anderson, 2016
Image 5 #: Photographer Karl Anderson, 2016
Copyright Jasmina Panic