Färg & Blanche uses Bolon fabric to create samurai-inspired Long Neck armchair
In the next movie in our Bolon at Heart video series, Stockholm design duo Emma Marga Blanche and Fredrick Färg explain how they combined material by flooring company Bolon with thermoplastic felt to create an armchair informed by Japanese armour.
The Long Neck armchair, which will be presented by Färg & Blanche during Milan design week as part of a collection called Armour Mon Amour, envelops the sitter within a large shell-like backrest.
"It's a shell that you can walk into and it will protect you," explains Färg in the movie, which was filmed at Färg & Blanche's Stockholm studio.
"It is inspired by samurai body armour, where hard and the soft material is sewn together."
The chair is the result of experiments Färg and Blanche have been undertaking with new textiles by Swedish flooring brand Bolon. The company is best known for producing woven vinyl flooring, but recently launched a range of rugs that combine vinyl thread with natural fibres such as wool.
"We are working with Bolon's new textile, experimenting and trying to find new combinations and ways to use it," Blanche explains.
"We love the the challenge of working with something new, something which in a way pushes the boundaries of what you can do with material," Färg adds. "This is what Bolon has been doing."
Färg & Blanche used Bolon's Duet fabric for the outer shell of the chair and the seat. The combination of vinyl and metalised polyester in the material makes it glisten slightly, like the shell of a beetle.
The designers sewed this material together with a thermoplastic polyester felt, which lines the inside of the backrest and becomes rigid when exposed to heat.
"We've actually been sewing together the Bolon fabric with this felt, and then we've been baking the whole chair in an oven," Färg explains.
Long Neck was first displayed at Bolon's Innovators at Heart exhibition during Stockholm Design Week, where it formed part of a collection of experimental furniture pieces upholstered with Bolon material.
Färg & Blanche's Couture armchair for BD Barcelona, which is made from pieces of plywood stitched together with a sewing machine, was also featured in the exhibition.
"Bolon approached BD Barcelona to do a project together, and they selected our Couture armchair and upholster it with the new fabric they've been developing," Färg explains.
Färg & Blanche's Armour Mon Amour collection, which Long Neck is part of, will consist of a range of one-off and large-scale furniture pieces.
But Färg believes that the material experiments they have been developing for the collections could lead to a commercial product in future, just like the studio's experiments with sewing wood resulted in the Couture armchair.
"Definitely I think what we're developing here could be seeds to something that could go into production," he says.
This movie was filmed by Dezeen for Bolon in Milan, Italy. It is the seventh in a 12-part series exploring Bolon's history, design and technology. Music is by Tobias Lindén of Fry Communications.
Watch all the movies at: www.dezeen.com/bolonatheart