Monday, November 15, 2010

My One and Only

After reading through the program for the LifeEdited competition (mentioned in a previous post) I started to think back on old projects from architecture school. One of my favorites was a piece of furniture I designed and built during an industrial design summer lab.

At the time I was living in an old house with wonderful character on Roanoke St near downtown Blacksburg. My bedroom was very spacious (about 12' x 13') and had wonderful natural light. The space posed one major issue, however - there was no closet. Entering my third year of college and moving straight from the dorm rooms, I didn't have any furniture for storage either. I decided to make a design project out of the challenge and worked with my industrial design professor and the woodshop guys to make it a reality.

My goal was to design one piece of furniture that could house everything I needed in my bedroom except the bed. The piece would have a workspace for my laptop, storage for my IKEA Kassett boxes that housed small items like socks, work supplies, photos and cosmetics and, of course, room for all of my shoes and clothing. I believe that a design should give the most for the least - economy of form. Not only would this piece of furniture have a place for everything I needed, but it would also act as a room divider, separating the calm sleeping space from the active work space.

After a lot of sketching and prototypes, I devised a modular system that could be rebuilt as many times as my needs would change. The frame was made of PVC pipe (before I understood how bad it was for the environment) and the shelving and shear walls were made of MDF. All of these materials were readily available "off the shelf" at Lowes.

I did in fact rebuild the piece multiple times between my third and fifth year of school. The photos below show the final layout, which I felt was also the most successful.


The best part - when I finished school and moved out of the room, I disassembled the piece and returned the PVC connectors to Lowes for a $200 store credit! Now that's my kind of recycling.

Kristen Ziegler


Bombproof said...

WOW! thats incredible.... you're hired!

missemilyjones said...

this is super awesome kristen! i'd like your expert services to organize my desk area in my bedroom!

Anonymous said...

Thanks! Happy to help both of you with your projects once I'm on the mend.