Monday, April 1, 2013

That Cardboard Life.

Before spring break we started on our latest design challenge: making a cardboard chair. Not just for decoration, though... this cardboard chair has to hold the weight of a person. More specifically, my chair has to hold my weight. 

Challenge #1: make a chair out of 4' x 4' of cardboard that is JUST folded and not cut. No adhesives (tape, glue, etc.) may be used in the building process. It was suppose to hold our weight. I found this challenge to be SO FRUSTRATING. Mostly because I attempting making mine at midnight the night before when I was very sleep deprived, so I all I wanted was to figure out some way to make this work. Mine ended up just being a box that held your weight sort of... if you sat on the edge of it.


A lot of my fellow students had solutions like mine that ended up looking like a box. I attempted a back of the chair, thats what the floppy cardboard sticking out of the top of the back is suppose to be. At least there was a hint of design on the seat, which was made with tabs to hold the card board together.

Challenge #2: Make a cardboard chair to hold your weight based on a relationship. This chair is allowed to be cut, not just folded, but still no glue or tape can be used to hold it together. Our next steps were to write an essay on the relationship we were basing our chair off of and then make three mini models out of thick paper or cardboard demonstrating our three best ideas.

The relationship I decided to base by chair off of was my relationship with my little sister. Lauren Kay Welch, who is six years old. She's the cutest thing ever, and getting a little sister when I was fourteen years old was the biggest and best surprise of my life to date.

Lauren & I. She is in kindergarten and some of her favorite things are
singing, dancing, spongebob squarepants, and birthday cake pops from Starbucks.
I knew from the beginning that I wanted to make my chair a two-part chair kind of thing. I wanted to make a chair on its own, that also had a mini version of itself next to it. I wanted them to look good together or apart, since my sister and I don't live in the same town. I decided to make her side of the chair the same thing as mine but miniature because all of my friends say she is a mini-me. Since I did not have a lot of ideas on the design, and I had such a problem with structure holding me on the first design problem (chair from above) I decided to focus my three mini models on the structure.

Chair idea #1: a grid structure on the bottom for support. The back of the chair would be a half of a circle, that would be a complete circle when the two parts are together (the mini chair would be a smaller circle though but the illusion that when it grew bigger it would fit with the bigger circle would be there).

Chair idea #2: a triangle formed base for structure. The chair backs would allow my sister and I to sit back to back, but her chair back appears the same as mine just smaller.
Chair idea #3: again, playing with a grid like structure because I thought this would be the most successful in holding weight.

In class, the idea of the chair back continuing to the side was formed in order to create a stronger back.
I'm going to be a cardboard queen by the end of this project. Also, I'm probably going to never want to see another piece of cardboard again.

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