The “Woven Legs Table” by Brian Wurst features 27 top and leg pieces bent into nine assemblies and then ripped into individuals. The pieces are glued at the bottom, doweled at their middle intersections and screwed, doweled and glued at the top “woven” area.

Multi-Use Furniture Highlights Design Emphasis Awards

The Design Emphasis student furniture design competition at IWF was punctuated by pieces that can be turned, stacked or rolled over to make a new piece. Several finalists and three category winners, including the Best of Show winner, can be manipulated or used as-is in more than one way.

Best in Show went to “än: multi-functional seating,” a piece designed and built by Terence Sean Yoo of the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA. A user can change position on the unit to use it as a couch or reading desk, and a built-in side table offers storage for books, bags or other personal belongings.

Other category winners were:

  • Contract Furniture: “Chat Chair,” by Kyung Kelly Lee of the Art Center College of Design
  • Seating: “Three Seat Bench,” by Chiaki Kako of the Kendall College of Art and Design
  • Ready-to-Assemble: “Coffee Table #15,” by Buck Campbell from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design
  • Casegoods and Occasional: “Dining Table for Two,” by Christopher Filla from Kansas State University
  • Design Creativity: “Woven Legs Table,” by Brian Wurst of Haywood Community College.

Featured here are a sampling of the finalists.




“än: multi-functional seating” can be used as a couch or a reading desk. “It is often impractical or cost-prohibitive to provide a suite of single-purpose furniture pieces,” says designer Terence Sean Yoo. “än provides a smart and sensible alternative to this problem.” The piece is built of preformed plywood panels, maple veneer and a steel tube frame.
Chiaki Kako’s “Three Seat Bench” has three sections that can stack on top of each other to save space or extend with a simple pull-down action. Joints are secured with pegs, which eliminates the need for tools in assembly.
This table was built from mahogany and crotch mahogany veneer on MDF panels with black walnut detail on the stretcher. “The form is produced from a Scandinavian design philosophy: to create a beautiful piece economically while taking a fresh approach to structure,” says designer Johnathan Lorenz of Kendall College of Art and Design.
“Coffee Table #15” is assembled by simply sliding legs into the beam and placing the glass top. Buck Campbell made the wood pieces with plastic laminate on Baltic Birch shapes.
“Flexible Experimentation with Softwood” by Christopher Kurtz of Carnegie Mellon University School of Design consists of square or hexagonal pieces of wood strung together. Potential applications include a bench as shown or hammocks, flooring or space division.
The “Elliptical Rocker’s” vacuum-formed seat comes from a form that can be used to create a single or double rocker or a porch swing. Designer Zane Howell of Haywood Community College formed the legs by laminating 1&Mac218;8-in. strips around a pre-shaped form and attached them to the rails with mortise and tenon.
“Chat Chairs” by Kyung Kelly S. Lee can be joined next to each other to make a bench, placed one in front of another for use as classroom desks or used alone as a writing table that is equally comfortable for right- or left-handed users. The vacuum-formed chairs measure 28-5&Mac218;8 in. tall and 18-1&Mac218;2 in. wide.
The proportions of Christopher Filla’s “Dining Table for Two” are refined to allow verbal and visual but not physical contact to create a heightened relationship between individuals.

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