August 4, 2007

Cardboard Kid Goodness From Riki Watanabe's Carton Furniture Series

watanabe_riki_stool.jpg

Andy has great photos of the eco-friendly, flatpackin' goodness of Watanabe Riki's hexagonal Riki Stool, designed in 1965 as part of his Carton Furniture Series. Looking at more photos of the stool going together, the designer's claim that it can support one ton sounds almost plausible.

The Tokyo design group Yos Collection reproduced the stool in 1997. And then around 2005, the Tokyo-Sapporo retailer Metrocs organized a retrospective of Watanabe's work and put several of his designs back into production, including his cardboard kids furniture.

riki_kids_set_orange.jpg riki_kids_set.jpg

In addition to high and low versions of the stool, the Carton Furniture Series includes a Kids Set, a square table and two stools which slide right under it. Awesome. More and more, I'm liking the idea of disposable, low-impact, low-cost design for the kids. Unless you're going the multigenerational heirloom route, why not go for the recyclable, leave-no-trace gear instead? [Though I bet the half dozen folks who thought to archive their original 1965 cardboard stools are looking pretty savvy right about now.]

Nova68 has the Riki Stool for $30-40 [nova68]
If you're in Japan, you can get the Kids Set from Metrocs, too, 6,800 yen [metropolitan.co.jp]
Previous cardboard kids furniture: from Polycell in the UK and the Papps in DE, also that sweet cardboard rocket, oh, and Enzo Mari's screen; Album di Famiglia's crib-on-wheels; Nume house; FIY kid gear from Foldschool; Kidsonroof mobile home; and on and on

2 Comments

I just jumped and down on one at Kid O (they have them too). I don't know about a ton, but they could definitely take a serious beating.

Look at the pictures of the cardboard rocket, and you'll see that--in the best NASA tradition--the kids are having a little drink less than 12 hours before takeoff.

[awesome. Tanqueray & Tang -ed.]

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