Dezeen Magazine

Nook by Patrick Frey

Cologne 2010: German designer Patrick Frey has created a collection of stools and benches each made of a single piece of folded plastic, presented at imm Cologne last week.

Called Nook, the stool is manufactured using VarioLine, a material used in vehicle manufacture and boat-building that consists of flexible foam sandwiched between layers of rigid plastic.

The folded shape is held together at the bottom by an aluminum catch.

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Here is some more information form the designer:


A hard shell – with a lightweight core. Weatherproof, extremely sturdy and easy to shape. A new material with a future.

It is the innovative VarioLine® plastic that gives the NOOK stool, produced by VIAL, its extraordinary design. The result is a symbiosis of tension, arcs and straightness. If you ask a product designer what he or she seeks in a material, you’re likely to get the following response: The material should be light and yet robust, rigid and yet flexible, easy to shape and yet very sturdy. And in the best of all possible worlds, it should be weatherproof and UV-resistant as well. Which is why Patrick Frey, designer of the NOOK, was so enthusiastic when he found all these characteristics in a single material – an innovative plastic called ‘VarioLine®’.

Frey made the most of the possibilities this material had to offer and designed ‘NOOK’ from a single piece. The VarioLine® is folded along a milled clinching pattern, creating structural tension before the entire structure is fixed at the bottom using an aluminium catch. This is how Patrick Frey made ingenious use of the elasticity and stability of VarioLine® for the extraordinary design vocabulary of the NOOK. Already in use for years in industrial applications such as vehicle manufacturing and boat building, the material has made a good name for itself. VarioLine® is a high-tech, injection-moulded integral foam plastic panel material produced according to the so-called ‘sandwich panel’ method, i.e. a closed-cell foamed core positioned between the high-density, pore-free surface layers. This structure is achieved in a single production step. And it goes without saying that a modern material is also environmentally friendly and sustainable. VarioLine® consists of polypropylene, which makes it easy to recycle. The material is produced by PolymerPark materials GmbH in Dresden.

The VIAL company specifically selected VarioLine® for its special properties. After all, this is a material that best satisfies the requirements involved in realising a vision of an innovative furniture collection that conveys a delightful new approach to living, both indoors and out. The teamwork between VIAL and designer Patrick Frey began with this in mind. With his creative interpretation of the VarioLine® material, Patrick Frey has created an interesting and distinct item of furniture: NOOK. Its contours are a world unto themselves – a world now to be further explored and developed by the ambitious company, in tandem with Patrick Frey. The next supplement to the stool is the NOOK bench, which will be unveiled during the first quarter of 2010.