An interview with product designer Konstantin
“A real all-rounder”
What did you really think when you first heard about our new TAKEoSEAT? 🤔You probably asked yourself how someone stumbled across the idea of designing a folding stool made of felt? So we thought we’d just have a chat with our product designer Konstantin. 😉 In this interview he told us what inspired him and how the product idea came into being.
Konstantin, can you tell us where you actually got the inspiration for your new TAKEoSEAT folding stool?
Haha, good question! A while ago we took a close look at the theme of “Agile Working” and we constructed various scenarios to show what work situations could look like in this context. During the course of this, we had the idea of designing a lightweight stool to meet the needs of this working approach.
“Agile Working”? What exactly does that mean?
Hmm, it’s not that easy to explain, because the definition can be a bit vague in some respects. The thing is, there aren’t any fixed rules to tell us how to practise or implement “Agile Working”. Many companies are finding their own way and developing individual structures.
But one thing’s certain – it’s a fast method of working in which employees decide for themselves when, how and where they want to work.
So it’s a very dynamic and flexible working method?
Yes, that’s right. Dynamic, flexible and creative! You see, another aspect is that you can collaborate with colleagues to come up with unconventional problem solutions and new ideas. That’s why “teamwork” plays a key role in “Agile Working” too.
And how do you start out with agile working and end up designing a folding stool?
With “Agile Working”, discussion and team get-togethers are very important. This means that you don’t always work in the same place. So locations and spaces need to keep adapting to new situations and meet changing needs.
Sometimes you work around a big table with colleagues, then you might be alone for focused work, other times several employees get together to present the progress made that day.
For this reason we thought it would be good to create a little spontaneous seat that can be carried around easily and stored to save space when not in use.
What features does the seat need in order to support companies in an agile approach to working?
It has to be light enough to carry around to different places. Whether you’d like to join in with a quick presentation or perch at your colleague’s desk briefly – or maybe you want to work in a quiet corner for a minute by yourself – the idea is that the stool will be practical in many situations and give us the chance to react spontaneously to new spatial structures.
Let’s talk shop for a bit: how did you proceed once you had discussed the idea?
Once the concept was in place, we spent several weeks simply gathering ideas, without evaluating or discarding them too quickly. This creative process is always incredibly exciting, because you never know what the end result’s going to be.
At the end of the day people came up with lots of great ideas, which we then scrutinised more closely.
Konstantin, KRETHO Produktdesigner
Why did you decide to design a stool in the end?
Because of our idea of space-saving storage. A folding stool was the best way to meet this need.
Tell us what happened next?
This was followed by a phase in which we looked for a suitable form and worked on the design. We then made quick cardboard models and evaluated them.
After we’d decided on a shape for the stool that allowed it to be opened and folded away, we set out in search of a suitable material – although we admit we had our own favourite right from the start: formed felt.
Why formed felt?
We just love the feel of felt! The stool finish is soft and warm thanks to the material, but at the same time it offers the required flexibility and stability. Apart from that, we hadn’t forgotten about the environment. The thing is, not only is formed felt lightweight and robust, it’s also 100% recyclable.
IIs TAKEoSEAT only meant for use in the workplace?
Nope, our folding stool can be used almost anywhere thanks to its purist form along with function that’s reduced to the essentials. From the student flat, basement party room and patio to kids’ bedrooms – there are a variety of possible uses. I think we’re justified in claiming that the TAKEoSEAT is a true all-rounder. (lacht).
Thank you Konstantin for the interview.