Pop-up furniture workshop


While the major constructions are going on at the new Tinkering Studio/Learning Studio at Pier 15, Nicole and I turned her kitchen space into "Tinkering Studio East" (because we both live in east bay) so we could continue working on prototyping things. Last Friday, we were making prototypes of pop-up workshop furniture such as work stations for artists, portable carts, foldable partitions, and display walls.

Feels good to work from home, especially at kitchen table!

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(Left) Nicole's idea sketch of soldering vending cart! It would be great if we could roll this into the Tinkering Studio so people could use soldering for projects or to fix circuit boards.
(Right) Foldable glue gun cart that has a pop-up bucket for glue waste.

These are the prototypes we made that day: the shelves and cabinets are all collapsible, the cardboard zigzag walls have places to display things, and the cardboard table with a tensile structure (can collapse easily by kicking the leg!). They are all light-weight and portable.

We love this stand for holding tools like pliers and wire cutters when we do activities on the floor, but it takes a space to store it when we are not using it (we have 6 or 7 of them). Then we thought it would be great if this stand could be also foldable so it would not take space when stored.

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And this is our attempt. It creates a sturdy triangle shape wot hold a large set of pliers and it is stable once the pliers are on. It would be convenient for storing and traveling!

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We also made a prototype of foldable cardboard Cabinet of Curiosities. In the new space, we will have several big Cabinets of Curiosities, but this cardboard version might be good for displaying things temporarily on workshop tables during activities.

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Another example of foldable cabinets. Because it is foldable, we also started thinking about how to make it sturdy in its expanded form. And those thoughts led us to mess about with tensile structures.

A tensile structure is a construction of elements carrying only tension and no compression or bending (according to wiki). We used strings so that it would provides tensions to hold the structure.

In the end of the day, Nicole made this table with a tensile structure. Beautiful!

It was a fun day working from kitchen table, playing with ideas, working intensively with hands, messing about with paper prototypes. We are really excited to see where our exploration goes!

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