Swaying bamboo becomes timeless furniture
Did you know that bamboo is actually a grass? After growing for some years, it becomes as hard as wood and at the same time stronger and more flexible than most types of wood. It’s also fast-growing and renewable. So, we headed out on a creative excursion to investigate the unique qualities of bamboo and to find out how to make the most out of it rather than copying wood. VOXLÖV dining table and chair is the first result.
Designer Francis Cayouette joined our bamboo-trip from the start and made some new discoveries. “When we use bamboo smart, according to its natural qualities, we can design shapes that are difficult to achieve with other materials.”
Bending shapes with flexible bamboo
Francis and the team used bamboo slats – thin layers of bamboo glued together in different dimensions. Thanks to the long fibre, bamboo is more flexible and easier to bend than most wood. “We explored different techniques to bend the bamboo and let the shapes become a part of the expression.” One challenge was to achieve just the right angle where the seat and backrest meet – with enough tilt and flexibility so that you can enjoy long meals at the dining table. “Bamboo behaves differently than wood, that was something we had to learn – and understand how to utilise. And, since the material is so hard, we could make the edge of the table really thin.”
A chair to linger in
Francis wanted the chair to feel strong and at the same time light and ”transparent”. “We tried with natural fibre on the seat and the backrest, but it made the chair look like a piece of outdoor furniture. Instead, we weaved twined paper cords by hand to get a built-in elasticity. It’s strong and has been used for years in furniture making.” The result is a chair just as flexible and soft as swaying bamboo – a comfortable place where good moments last longer.