Wilsonart Chair Design Competition

Six talented design students will kickstart their careers during the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) May 17-20, 2014.

They will introduce their design entries for the 10th annual “Wilsonart Challenges…” Student Chair Design Competition centered around the theme SPACE and inspired by the Wilson House museum.

Wilson House Museum | KitchAnn Style

The house was built in 1959 by Ralph Wilson Sr., founder of Wilsonart International. Wilson used it as both his home and a test lab to see how many uses his company’s plastic laminate could serve in everyday living. Wilsonart purchased the Wilson House from Ralph Wilson’s widow in 1997, and has since restored it to its original appearance in 1959.

Wilson House Museum | KitchAnn Style

The Wilson House has been recognized as a significant architectural structure by the Texas Historical Commission and the National Register of Historic Places. For more information, check out this circa 1998 article from The New York Times.

 Wilson House Tour | KitchAnn Style

The students began the competition period learning about Chair History and Morphorlogy. They toured both a Wilsonart factory and the Wilson House museum.

The Chair Design Competition requires each entrant to create seating products that celebrate the richness of Wilsonart International’s laminate surfacing materials. In this challenge, students have an opportunity to design and build a unique chair around their individual talents. The chairs are required to be built in full scale and must be able to support 400 pounds. Each student is responsible to build their own chair.

UH Student Models | KitchAnn Style

The final student chairs have to be constructed with Wilsonart Laminate as surfacing materials but the early mock-ups were made using a variety of materials.

UH Student Models | KitchAnn Style

The students constructed half-scale models and full-scale drawings to further analyse design details, strength and the building process.

Chair Building Phase | KitchAnn Style

The final two weeks were spent building the chairs and according to the student blog, whatever time was left was used to create the presentation. (Sound familiar to anyone?)

Student Wilsonart Chairs | KitchAnn Style

 

“We deliberated this year more than any other year due to the outpouring of talent,”
— design historian and materials specialist Grace Jeffers

And The Winner Is…

The winning student was Jenny Trieu with her “Infinite chair” composed of a plywood rib cage, layered with veneer then Wilsonart Laminate flowing continuously like an infinity symbol. Congrats, Jenny!

wilsonart chair compeptition winner | KitchAnn Style

Jenny’s chair epitomizes mid-century modernism through its unique structure and bold colors. Wilsonart Laminate  Zebrawood, 7980K-18  is accented by eye-catching Wilsonart Laminate in Hollyberry, D307-60. Wilsonart Laminate in Black, 1595-60 lines the edges.

About “Wilsonart Challenges…”
Wilsonart sponsors the “Wilsonart Challenges…” student design scholarship program to foster the careers of emerging furniture designers in North America. Each year, this competition challenges students at a designated design school to create a unique chair that uses Wilsonart Laminate to answer a specific design challenge.

Wilsonart selected the College of Architecture at the University of Houston to host the 2014 Challenge. The competition unfolds as a semester-long course, this year taught by Professor Jeff Feng and Grace Jeffers, design historian and materials specialist ( and daughter of a Formica salesman). The students were taught about laminate, its history, technical capabilities, current market trends and sustainability issues as well as the history of chairs as decorative art forms.

(Wilsonart is a sponsor for BlogTour NYC May 2014, but the views and opinions expressed on this blog are mine, and I will be honest in what I share. You, the reader, are my top priority and it is my goal to make sure you can trust the content and integrity of this blog.)

iSteam with Mr. Steam

black and white iSteam controls | KitchAnn Style

The BlogTour NYC countdown has begun and I’m super excited. One week from today I’ll be in a Spa in SoHo  courtesy of Mr Steam and the company’s charismatic leader Martha Orellana.

High Line NY | KitchAnn Style

After strolling the New York High Line the group will enjoy a relaxing Sunday at Ancient Baths in SoHo. I checked out their website and the services offered look amazing. I had to look up the terms effleúrage and pétrissage because I don’t speak Massage. The Red Wine Ritual looks quite incredible.

Aire Ancient Baths | KitchAnn Style

I met Martha Orellana, VP of Sales and Marketing for Mr. Steam, on my first BlogTour trip to London last fall. She is living proof of the benefits of steam (hydrates the skin, relieves stress, removes toxins from the body, etc. ) and is passionate about her company and it’s products.

Martha Collage |KitchAnn Style

Mr. Steam has been in the news lately with the many awards their new leading-edge iSteam steam shower control has been receiving.

The iSteam’s revolutionary touch screen display and feature-rich menu offer an unsurpassed, customizable user experience. Along with a stunning graphic interface and bespoke design by world-renowned Industrial designer David Farrage, whose experience with Movado™ and Lamborghini™ is evident in iSteam’s contemporary styling.

“We set out to create the best possible user experience, integrating all the benefits of steam
bathing and accessories into one highly intuitive control,” —
Mike Pinkus, Mr. Steam President

High tech meets high touch with the iSteam home steam shower control. As easy to use as a smartphone, the highly intuitive LCD touch screen features beautiful graphics and high-performance in wet environments.

Swipe-touch simplicity controls temperature, duration, aromatherapy, chromatherapy and music, turning your steam shower into a sensory spa.
– The iSteam microprocessor deciphers between a touch or drag of a finger to perform the correct action.
– The iSteam’s Auto-fading display incorporates a real-time clock, individual user preference settings, and screen dimming technology.
– iSteam displays only the function the user wants, instead of a confusing array of tiny buttons or complex navigation.
– Manufactured with the highest-quality, fused silica glass and polished cast aluminum, iSteam has attained a high level ingress protection rating of IP-67, and is capable of full water immersion of up to three feet.
– iSteam employs an exclusive three-tiered safety system with passcode protection, temperature limit and time-out features built to ISO-9001 certification.
– Featuring an optional Bluetooth® Audio Streaming System, iSteam pairs up to eight devices and four in-shower speakers.
– iSteam can be used with all eSeries Generators, as well as the wireless iGenie® control.
Available in black and white finishes.

black and white iSteam controls | KitchAnn Style

With an e Series generator, a complete iSteam home steam system starts at about $4,000, not including installation.

Mr. Steam is a leader in innovation, has the highest quality steam products, affordable pricing, best-of-class warranties, and unparalleled customer service.

Mr. Steam has been proudly manufacturing products in the U.S. since 1917.

(Mr. Steam is a sponsor for BlogTour NYC May 2014, but the views and opinions expressed on this blog are mine, and I will be honest in what I share. You, the reader, are my top priority and it is my goal to make sure you can trust the content and integrity of this blog.)

BlogTourNYC and NYCxDESIGN

BlogtourNYC May 2014 Designers

In a few weeks I’ll be headed to New York Design Week anchored by the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) with BlogTour NYC May 2014 founded by Modenus CEO Veronika Miller.

This whirlwind trip will be in collaboration with WantedDesign. Eleven noteworthy bloggers from the US, Canada, Holland, England and Denmark will also be attending and posting updates.

BlogtourNYC May 2014 | KitchAnn Style

NYCxDESIGN is New York City’s official citywide celebration of design. Spanning all disciplines of design, NYCxDESIGN creates a collaborative platform for cultural and commercial opportunities, elevates established and emerging design practices and increases awareness of and appreciation for design by all audiences. Events are staged across all five boroughs, from convention facilities and galleries to design schools and public parks from May 9-20, 2014.

NYCxDESIGN logo

WantedDesign is a premier creative destination for the international design community during NYCxDESIGN in May. Building on the success of WantedDesign’s groundbreaking debut in 2011, amazing programming and attendance in 2012 and 2013 (with more than 9,000 attendees last May), and various programming during the year to nurture NYC’s design dialogue, WantedDesign will continue to set the standard for international design curation with its fourth edition. The event will offer a 360-degree experience with innovative installations, memorable products, a pop-up store, interactive experiences, convivial lounges, thought-provoking student workshops, engaging discourse and more.

WantedDesign NY

Located in the exceptional landmark Terminal Stores building on 11th Avenue, WantedDesign offers participants and visitors alike a unique and dynamic experience and serves as a meeting point for designers, manufacturers, industrials, distributors, craftsmen, students, design institutions, the press and all design lovers. WantedDesign is actively part of NYCxDESIGN and aims to showcase New York as a dynamic and unique design destination.

ICFF 2014 | KitchAnn Style

The 26th annual International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF), North America’s platform for global design, will map the newest frontier of what’s best and what’s next in innovative and original avant-garde home and contract products May 17-20, 2014.

North America’s premier showcase for contemporary design, the ICFF annually lures those in determined pursuit of design’s timely truths and latest trends to an encyclopedic exhibition of up-to-the-moment offerings, as well as a series of fascinating, fun, edifying programs, and a packed schedule of exhibits and features.

Eleven categories will be showcased during the fair:  furniture, seating, carpet and flooring, lighting, outdoor furniture, materials, wall coverings, accessories, textiles, kitchen and bath and fabricators.

For the four-day duration of the Fair, 165,000 net square feet of the Javits Center will be abuzz with more than 29,500 interior designers, architects, retailers, designers, manufacturers, representatives, distributors, and developers. On Tuesday, May 20, the ICFF opens its doors to the general public, as well.