Chairing Styles: Student Furniture Design Program

Chairing Styles: Student Furniture Design Program

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Marcia Prentice
May 11, 2010

The Chairing Styles Scholarship Program, which is a partnership between FIDM, Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising, and Cotton Incorporated is a unique and challenging program, which is a collaboration between interior, fashion, and textile student designers. For interior design students, the end result is designing and manufacturing your own chair.

The Chairing Styles program for interior design students consists of a furniture design class, meeting with manufactures, and presentation of the chairs during the Debut runway show. Judges choose from the 10 designs to select the top 3 to be awarded a scholarship for FIDM. This year's winners are Jorge Ochoa (Eksofia), Rusini Haris (Lady M), and Christie Davis (Little Sanctuary).

Winning Designs:

First Place - Ekosofia
  • Interior Design Student: Jorge Ochoa
  • Inspiration: Nature, lines of the orchid flower, Antoni Gaudi's furniture
  • Process: Mixing of these inspirations and influences led him to create a piece of furniture that isn't only appealing, but also sculptural
  • Description: Wood frame and wood details inside the frame, dark brown finish, back is upholstered with welting of the accent fabric
  • Manufacturer: Serena Interiors, Inc.

Second Place - Lady M
  • Interior Design Student: Rusini Haris
  • Inspiration: Maya Lin's topographical installation work
  • Process: Fusion of industrial and organic elements
  • Description: Lady M is made of many layers of aluminum rods to simulate the topography of rugged terrains. The layers are set apart to keep the chair light and airy and at the same time to counter-balance the austerity of the metal. In line with keeping the chair light, it is powder-coated in high-gloss white which is also a perfect backdrop to showcase the vibrant colors of the fabric.
  • Manufacturer: A.P. Smiley & Sons, Dan's Custom Metal

Third Place - Little Sanctuary
  • Interior Design Student: Christie Davis
  • Inspiration: Modular furniture, pieces that fit together
  • Description: Maple veneer with no VOC, Miracle Cover all purpose liquid sealant, horizontal pattern on chairs, rosette pattern on table top
  • Manufacturer: Pivot Furniture

Which chair design and coordinating textile do you like best?

(Images: Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising)

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