Virtual Design Festival

14 product designs from York St John University graduates

14 product designs from York St John graduates

A chair made from repurposed climbing rope and a SAD lamp that doubles up as a plant pot are featured in this VDF school show of work by York St John University students.

The projects showcased here represent the culmination of their three-year undergraduate degree in product design, based at the university's School of Art, Design and Computer Science.

They span everything from more traditional furniture pieces to an alternative snowboard binding system and foldable bike trolley.

BA Product Design, York St John University

University: York St John
Course: BA Product Design
Simon Pattison and Duncan Brooks

Course statement: 

"From the bespoke to the mass-produced, this product design degree is all about creativity and invention.

"This course gives you the technical skills to turn the product innovations of your imagination into reality. You will graduate with the theoretical and practical expertise to make yourself employable in a broad sector of the creative industry."

14 product designs from York St John University graduates

Ren by Adam Staniland

"Taken from the Swedish word for minimalism and simplicity, the Ren is a contemporary, stackable dining chair. It is constructed entirely from sustainably sourced, 18-millimetre birch plywood, making the Ren a robust, long-lasting product for the home.

"It is available in four distinct colour variants, with a less expensive plain version allowing owners to finish the chair as desired.

"The back features a slot, which reduces weight and acts as a carry handle so the chair can be moved with ease. Up to two chairs can be stacked at a time and the product arrives flat-packed."

14 product designs from York St John University graduates

Alex Blunkell

"This design allows ceramic manufacturers to take advantage of the high street coffee culture phenomenon.

"It is based on a brief, which called for the creation of an alternative design concept to challenge the use of plastics in portable, handheld flasks."

14 product designs from York St John University graduates

Carl Bambrough

"This work desk is made from high pressure laminate (HPL) and hopes to change the way we interact with our home working environment. The abstract finish of the HPL is designed to relax and inspire.

"The desk itself allows for uncompromised workflow by allowing users to access a storage compartment even while there is equipment on top of the desk.

"An integrated cable management system allows users to reduce visible mess by feeding an extension cord into the storage compartment, which can be accessed through the allocated slots on top of the desk."

14 product designs from York St John University graduates

Chris Pratt

"This is a first prototype for a stool, which repurposes worn-out climbing rope to create a suspension seating system.

"The ropes connect the centre panel with the main drum, to provides the user with a comfortable, ergonomic seat."

14 product designs from York St John University graduates

Dan Armstrong

"Working with architectural metalworking company Topp & Co. I have produced models and CAD renders for a coffee table, manufactured from brass and a toughened, six-millimetre glass sheet.

"This table is the first step in a new adventure for the metalworking company. Over the course of three months, I worked alongside the managing director exploring form and process. The next stage in the life of this coffee table is a full-sized prototype."

Orbit by Ed Merrick

"Orbit is a multi-purpose furniture piece designed for compact living, which can be transformed from a desk into a bed and storage product.

"This product hopes to address the need for individuals to work independently and safely from home. Given the recent pandemic and implications of lockdown and self-distancing, this product attempts to fulfil some of the considerations for the design of furniture in the near future."

Span by Jake Joynson 

"Span started as a study of shape and material, with the end goal of creating furniture. I wanted to explore structures such as geodesic domes, which are created using predominantly triangular shapes known for their exceptional strength.

"Inspired by tensegrity structures and their strength under tension, I set out to incorporate movement and comfort into an almost rigid-looking piece of furniture. The result is Span – a flexible hammock system developed using recycled rubber
innertube as a hinge joint between CNC-milled, wooden triangles."

SAD light by Jamie Clayton

"This SAD lighting solution uses blue-infused white light to treat seasonal affective disorder (SAD) at a lower brightness level than traditional white-light alternatives.

"Combined with the lantern shape, this will reduce any glare caused by the strong light necessary to treat SAD, while providing a more ambient solution to a common problem. It also brings the user closer to the environment with a detachable section that can house plants."

Jessica Whitehead

"This product is based on biophilic design principles and combines an air conditioner with various plant species that are able to improve the air quality in a variety of environments.

"Thousands of people worldwide are currently homebound due to Covid-19, with no access to a garden and green spaces. The aim of this product is to create real connections to nature in the home and to foster an improved overall sense of wellbeing."

Drip & Sip by Katherine Maitland-Gleed

"There is a growing number of self-professed connoisseurs, who enjoy drinking high-quality coffee. But do we really have the time? The Drip & Sip is a possible solution, combining quality coffee with an on-the-go lifestyle. Its sleek, Scandi-inspired design improves the relationship between consumer and product, by allowing them to be a part of the brewing process.

"In response to the global plastic waste crisis, the Drip & Sip cup and its packaging is produced using sustainable and responsibly-sourced materials."

Nicholas McCubbin

"This is a plant pot display stand, heavily influenced by Scandinavian design. It maximises the use of space by displaying the plants vertically while occupying a very small footprint in the room.

"The tiered system is fabricated in hardwood, in a modern interpretation of a well-established archetype."

Peter Dodd

"When looking at modern folding bikes one flaw is apparent with most designs: they become functionless once folded. While this is offset by a lightweight and portable frame, the issue still remains as the bike is no longer benefiting its user.

"I propose a new design, in which the folded frame becomes a convenient personal shopping trolley. No additional structures are added and the frame and two wheels act as the structure for the trolley."

Sophie Wells

"My client was diagnosed with Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) in early June 2019. I designed a custom-fit seat that allows her to relax and feel safe while improving her day-to-day life.

"Using in-depth research and observation of my client's usual sitting positions, I have designed a flowing seating structure. The upholstery was designed in collaboration with a textile design student at Leeds Arts University. "

Apex Bindings by Trytan Dugmore

"Apex is an alternative binding system designed to improve the efficiency of attaching and detaching snowboard boots when on or off-piste.

"The binding is universal and can fit any snowboard and boot. For riders of all abilities, the bindings were designed to transfer weight and energy from toe to heel, supported by a hard frame and touch latch.

"Calm, neutral colours and a clean, minimalist design, serve to show the high-quality nature of the binding."

Virtual Design Festival's student and schools initiative offers a simple and affordable platform for student and graduate groups to present their work during the coronavirus pandemic. Click here for more details.