Chaool, convertible furniture
Often times apartment dwellers in cramped living situations will attempt to save space by buying “2-for-1” furniture. The problem with current convertible furniture is that none of the products on market are wholly one thing or the other, they are an awkward combination of both. That’s where Chaool steps in. Chaool is a convertible piece of furniture that is designed first and foremost as a chair, then secondly as a step stool
Imagine the place on the left is where you call home, and that the inside of your home looked like the scenario on the right. Well in Japan, a typical one bedroom apartment is only 110 sq ft — that's a 10'x10' room.
Convertible furniture does exist to alleviate issues with cramped living spaces. However, as shown, the options that exist on the market are a combination of multiple different things — never really owning a solitary identity.
So that is what I wanted to avoid. I didn't want to design a convertible piece of furniture by clumsily combining two separate things.
I turned to Japanese style seating, and Japanese woodworking to find inspiration. The subtle beauty in the meticulous craftsmanship was visually comforting; and with so much consideration for the details, nothing about Japanese furniture making is clumsy.
Form and function ideation began on paper ...
...then quickly moved into model making. Early model making ensured that the end result was well thought out and functioned as simply and elegantly as I had first envisioned — no exceptions.
To achieve the simple functionality I was after, I developed the joint shown below. To transition from chair to step stool — and vice verse — the user simply turns a key located on either side of the chair. Turning the key unlocks the to joint such that the upper half can be lifted up and rotated downward — or upward depending on the user scenario.
A lot of attention was paid to the proportional layout of Chaool. I wanted everything to be visually balanced while still maintaining the functionality of a comfortable chair and a working step stool.
Solidworks was used a lot in my process; it aided in the developement and functionality of my moving parts. Below is the 3D model rendered in keyshot with the "key" shown in brass.
Such as it were, the birth of Chaool is upon us. Elegance and functionality refined and redefined.