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Concept Chair

A chair prototype created from corrugated cardboard without the aid of tape, glue, or adhesives.

Design a Functional Cardboard Chair

The goal of this project was to understand the challenges of designing a physical product. By researching and studying furniture, I developed a marriage between function and form that addressed the basic need for this project—seating. First and foremost, the design had to work properly and be able to accommodate an adult human. Additionally, it needed to address comfort, aesthetics, durability, and other concerns that people expect chairs to meet. To complement this seemingly simple task, I was not allowed to use glue, tape, or adhesives.

Team Role

Industrial Designer

Project Type

Physical Prototype


5 Weeks

Supplementing UX with Industrial Design

As technology and computing transcend beyond the desktop and into other mediums, it is important for designers to understand those forms. I took an industrial design class at Carnegie Mellon because industrial designers combine form, fit, and function when creating products. They create emotional connections with their users and understand how people will relate, interface, and live with their products.

Understanding the Human Form

I studied various types of chairs to gain a better understanding of their form and function. Next, I measured their proportions and saw how they related to the human body. After a two weeks of research, I created a mood board of designs I liked based on extensive research.

Starting Small Before Going Big

I brought my ideations to life by experimenting with cardboard on the small scale. Using scaled models helped me quickly understand the strengths and weaknesses of cardboard and how I could manipulate it.

Building a Full-Scale Prototype

First, I modeled my chair’s templates in Illustrator and printed them on sheets on 11 x 17 paper. Then I placed them on corrugated cardboard to use as a framework. Next, I traced the shapes and cut them out using a ruler and X-ACTO blades

Final Design