Feb 23, 2009

FlexibleLove 16 - Stretchable Chair seats 1 to 16


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.


Made of honey-combed cardboard, the FlexibleLove is a cross between Frank Gehry'sWiggle 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.) 

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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