Form + Function = Felt

Form + Function = Felt

Anne Reagan
Oct 19, 2009

Plain and simple wool felt is no longer taking a backseat to its industrial relatives like steel and rubber. In the hands of some forward-thinking designers this common material has stepped to the forefront to become functional and beautiful possessions.

Felt is one of the oldest forms of fabric, made from wool fibers that have been pressed together while damp. Both its soft texture and sound dampening qualities make it perfect for both industrial and residential design. Because wool is a sustainable material, many designers are experimenting with shapes and colors with an ecological consciousness. We've also come across products that look and feel like wool felt but are actually made from recycled materials.

Felt can be manipulated in a variety of ways, making it a great choice for designers and artists looking to create simple, beautiful goods.

Top row, from left to right:

1. In any other material this chair would look terrifying to sit in. Yet without even touching it there is an incredible sense of tactile beauty and comfort. Its dynamic style and angular design scream "a futurist sits here!". Made with renewable resources.
Relief Chair by Mickus Projects (Brooklyn, NY): $3,998.00 at Branch

2. Made not from wool but from 100% post consumer recycled water bottles, this pillow will make you feel nice and cozy AND responsible.
Be Nice Or Leave pillow: $69.00 at Alexandra Ferguson (Etsy)

3. You don't have to worry about stubbing your toe on this bed frame. Made from thick, plush felt you will be surrounded by comfort.
Blu Dot Dodu Bed: see website for details at Velocity

4. Cozy up to your cup o' joe. This is a fantastic, utilitarian design for us daily coffee/tea drinkers.
Wool Felt Coffee Cozy: $7.30 by Inbound Thread (Etsy)

5. Keys, change, sunglasses…the number of drop-upon-entering-the-house items can feel like you're in the security line at the airport. These colorful felt organizers, offered in two sizes, will keep you organized and alleviate any scratches on your entry table. When paired with the Kbox it becomes a perfect place for jewlery.
Felt Box Inserts by Compact Desk, Australia: $9.00 - $15.00 each at Rare Device

Bottom row, from left to right:

6. This vivid, hand-knitted wool and mohair felt bowl could hold any number of items: fruit, candy, crayons…and not leave a scratch on your table.
Violet Double-Wide Treasure Bowl: $40.00 at Shanineal (Etsy)

7. It's that hearth time of year. What better way to lighten your load of logs than this lovely felt carrier with handles.
Felt Hearth by Kathryn Walter: $75.00 at Walter/FELT Studio

8. Felt underfoot. This 100% New Zealand felted wool rug will instantly impart warmth to your room on any cold winter night.
Roost Pebble Felted Wool Rug: $495.00 by Roost at Velocity

9. The name says it all. But that is a good thing; picture filling this utilitarian basket with your newspaper recycling, your winter mittens or your children's toys.
Simple Felt Basket by Parkhaus: $150.00 - $250.00 at Design Within Reach

10. Warm, cushioned felt combined with beautiful walnut makes a safe landing for your precious electronics.
Juice Box: $129.00 at Blu Dot

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