Thursday, June 25, 2009

Zero waste furniture - locally designed too?

My buddy Mickey is an architect and I like to rib him about taking real "furniture classes". I build furniture and design things, but most of what I've learned comes from trying things and reading. I am happy to experiment and have had some really great ones and some that never saw the daylight. Mickey has had some really great designs and I still remember when I told him months ago about this contest to make furniture from one sheet of plywood - no glue - no fasteners. We quickly imposed upon ourselves the idea that it should be zero waste. I had heard of other zero waste designs and I believe it is not only a better challenge but also much more responsible to not waste material when making things.

We worked on our own designs, and I had a few I liked, but nothing I was really happy with. Mickey on the other hand, showed up one night to a cookout with an MDF prototype in tow of a child-size chair. I wanted to offer advice, but it was pretty nice the way it was. Time got away from me and as I entered a busy and stressful part of my year, the deadline passed without my entry. Mickey however, entered two and kept it quiet. After seeing the designs and all the other entries, I wish more people could see it. There were all sorts of crazy designs in there with an honorable mention even going to a plywood bird's nest. It looked cool, but come on, seriously? Some of these things look like alien spacecraft not furniture. Anyhow, Mickey's designs didn't win, but he did build them both and photographed the assembly. He even did it with zero waste which I didn't honestly see another design attempt to do. I'll publish his shots here and hopefully we can get them in the shop soon so you can see them in person.

The desk is called Dorma and the table and chairs make up Ella's Party. When you see how cool these are, keep in mind these are one sheet of plywood, no glue, no screws, and built and designed by one guy.
If you want to see the other entries go to

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