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Thursday, June 20, 2024

Form over function, or function over form?



Safety, fit for purpose, standards, ergonomics… not the usual starting points for designing aesthetically pleasing furniture. So how can you incorporate practicality without stifling creativity?


The answer lies within a new resource for furniture designers, set to be launched in September at 100% Design, a trade show for the design industry.



The Furniture Design Toolkit (FDT), created by the Furniture Industry Research Association, aims to provide designers with the tools needed to incorporate ergonomics, user trials, Standards and legislation into the design process. The Toolkit is the only design resource to contain this highly valuable information, provided by industry experts.



FIRA’s FDT will be launched at 11am on Thursday 19th September at an exclusive event during 100% Design. A panel of design experts will discuss their views on the Toolkit and open the session up for questions. In addition, FIRA will be exhibiting and giving out information about the Toolkit throughout 100% Design (18-21 September) at Stand O33a.


Credit Haworth



Levent Çaglar, FIRA’s Principal Ergonomist, said: “In today’s marketplace, to compete with low-priced imported products from abroad, UK manufacturers are concentrating on adding value through design expertise. For a product to be commercially successful, it needs to be attractive to users, fit for purpose and designed to sound ergonomic principles to ensure good usability; regardless of price point.”


The toolkit will focus on three areas of furniture:


• Office furniture
• School furniture
• Contract/Hospitality furniture


It will include key information about ergonomics, user testing, task analysis and standards.


Levent continued: “Designing new products using the Toolkit will significantly reduce the cost of development and the time taken by getting it right first time. The FDT provides designers with tools and guidance to help them concentrate on creating visually attractive and desirable products which meet all Standards and are ready for market.”


Following the launch at 100% Design, the Furniture Design Toolkit will be available to download from the website as an interactive PDF. The Toolkit can be accessed free of charge to members of the Furniture Industry Research Association or purchased for £90 by non-members.


For more information telephone 01438 777 700, email info@fira.co.uk or visit www.fira.co.uk/furniture-design-toolkit








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