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March 31, 2007

Green & Expandable Seating


My friend Robert has an eye for design and tipped me off to an incredible "folding chair" by Pinzaan -- although folding is a bit of a misnomer. To say this chair folds is akin to describing origami as merely folded paper. This chair is less about folding than it is about expanding. While we're at it, "chair" is a bit misleading too. So consider this a story about incredible expanding seating.

Flexible_love_16 Made of honey-combed cardboard, the FlexibleLove is a cross between Frank Gehry's Wiggle Chair (at least the cardboard part) and Richard James' Slinky. Closed, it weighs all of 55 lbs (25kg) and compresses to a very slinky 25" x 22" x 8" form (wide enough for one 5-year old -- or an adult's solo butt-cheek), but it expands to nearly 24 feet and can withstand up to 4230 lbs! (The manufacturer calculates the capacity to be adequate for 16 people -- which might be tolerable on a subway during rush hour but not for any prolonged casual seating. We Americans like our space.)

But why quibble about mere details of whether or not it is 12 or 16 bottoms that can be loaded onto a "bench" that can be transported home in the back of a car. It is the answer to every holiday dilemma of "how will we accommodate all these people." Further, with its patented accordion design, the FlexibleLove can be snaked and shaped to fit virtually any space. (See the FlexibleLove morph.)  Fl16round

FlexibleLove is the brain child of Chishen Chiu, a Taiwanese designer who first saw honeycombed cardboard being used to create palettes in lieu of wood. Available only in cardboard brown -- the love seat is decidedly green as it is made from recycled paper and wood. The paper is currently untreated -- so you do have to worry a bit about spills.

For inquiries, write Pinzaan directly. Available in four different lengths, prices vary USD300 to USD540 retail.  -- Diane


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March 30, 2007

Have You Entered?

Write about modern outdoor and WIN!

Are your walls looking a little bare these days? Tell us about a hot modern outdoor product --- and enter to win a signed piece of original artwork. 

Send your entries to Think Spring Contest by April 2, 2007. Include the product name and where readers can find it. Don't forget your name, phone #, and email address. We'll announce our winner on April 4th.

Check out our latest Reader Response...

Pink_chaise_2Carly from Miami, Fl writes...

The Atlanta deckchair from Hugonet is great! It comes in 17 vibrant colors -- perfect for hot and spicy Miami.   

AlveoNancy from Long Beach, Ca writes...

The Alveo Chaise by Emu at Grounded makes me wish I had beaucoup bucks to spend on outdoor. It's Huge--big enough for an intimate party of two or a great place to sit around and flip through the latest beach read. $4,500.


Rolanda from Atlanta, GA writes...

I just love the Palms Lounger from Lister. It would go great with my teak patio table and chairs -- but is a bit our of my price range at $1699.


Chas from Provincetown, MA writes...

I fell in love with this stainless and granite firepit that I found online. I just think it would be an incredible way to heat up our cool summer nights.

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Spring lighting sale

Blue_pendant_lighting_universe It only seems fair that if we are to endure Spring cleaning, we should be rewarded with Spring shopping!

The fresh air, sunshine, and flora may have you itching to brighten up your home -- and while we love splashing new colors on our walls, it may be a bit easier to install a new lighting fixture.

Visit Lighting Universe from now until April 28th and save up to 20% on select products.

Lighting Blog Roll

Happy shopping!!! --aj

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March 29, 2007

Modern Design Flip Books


Obviously, we all realize that PURE CONTEMPORARY is an outstanding resource for products and information on modern design. Right? Right. We're comfortable with that. Which is why we so confidently refer you to yet another outstanding resource for the classics, icons and next big things in Chairs and in Aluminum Design . Small, well-designed flip books from Architonic give readers 400 top products in a quick simple format that's fun to search. 16 Euros through Architonic.

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Bungee nano


I am a klutz. My cell phone is decorated not with glittering gems or Hello Kitty stickers but with scratches. My iPod slips from my hands and crashes to the supermarket floor perhaps weekly. I'm beholden to bulging pockets just to keep everything I carry from sliding through my butterfingers. I am the perfect consumer study for Umbra's Bungee nano.

The idea is simple: a protective bumper for any version of iPod nano that wont slip, wont fall, and wont make rocking out any different. The controls are still accessible, there's a neck strap, it comes in three colors
(blue, black, white), and it's $11.

Designed by car manufacturers BMW Group/Designerworksusa the Bungee nano is available through Umbra.

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March 28, 2007

Bamboo Isn't Just for Pandas ...

Bamboo_shootThat incredible shot is of a bamboo "shoot" --  a stalk that would have taken Jack halfway to the heavens -- or at least 80 feet. And even more impressive is the fact that bamboo can achieve this height in only one growing season, making it the fastest growing plant on the planet.

What goes up that fast would usually not be considered reliable. But amazingly, bamboo is a very hearty wood that falls about in the middle of the Janka Hardness Scale. And so while not as hard as a black walnut, is harder than a black cherry.

Joinery_processIf it is hard to imagine how those round shoots become wood furniture or even wood floors, check out these production pics by Maria Yee. The full slide show is here.

Maria Yee is a California-based furniture manufacturing company that has resurrected the art of wood joinery using Moso, a speciesTimber_crosscut of bamboo. The byproduct of her patent-pending joinery process is BambooTimbre® -- which is then crafted into furniture like this Metro Table.

In my research on bamboo, I also found out that the texture of bamboo is quite silky and that it feels warm to the touch in the winter months, and cool in the summer.

-- Diane

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Tom Dixon Dining Chair


The Tom Dixon Tall Dining Chair may not be the most expensive way to keep my figure, but at about $800, it's up there. No doubt named for its 50" height, this designer hot seat may as well be called the thin chair -- to sit on it I'd have to be.

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Get Stewed

Stew Design Workshop creates modern furniture and architecture with an eye toward improving our world, or at least not harming all that much. Sibling principles Jonathan and Kevin Racek use FSC certified woods when possible and even make use of more unconventional materials, like wood fashioned from pressed sunflower seed husks. Intriguing right? And, all the sawdust that comes from making wooden furniture goes to a local dairy farm that uses it for cow bedding.

Plus, check out what they can make.

Petal Chair, designed for single or group use.


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March 27, 2007

My, what a big sofa you have


Gone are the days of plastic lawn chairs and cheap aluminum tables. Outside living requires comfort, style, and above all, plenty of seating for summer fêtes.

Kettal's Xxl collection of modular furniture allows for single-seating creations, are a wrapping sofa large enough for all of your guests!

Available in tan and brown finishes and 15 fabric options.

Have a great outdoor furnishing find? Enter Pure Contemporary's Think Spring Contest!.

Patio & Outdoor Blog Roll


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Sculpture Bench


A teak bench with stainless steel hardware and a design that shouts simplicity and balance. It's made for outdoor use, and I'd love to see a backyard designed around this and similar pieces. This bench, sized 78" x 37" x32"h goes for $4690 from  twentieth.

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