Design by Nikolaj Blinkenberg Willadsen
X-Chair is the first of many in the new ALPHABET-Series. It is so new that the name might still be preliminary. Any suggestions?
X-Chair – four different versions
The X-Chair is produced in four different versions. An exclusive handmade model in 3 different combinations made of oil treated Oak and smoked oak with beige or black flak cords and bras fittings.
A cheaper machine-milled version is also available made out of high quality multilayer birch plywood, Ash Tree ribs assembled with chrome fittings.
Do not hesitate to inquire about combinations of a whole third species of wood. However, the cord is only available in black and beige.
Cleaning and Maintenance
The X-Chair is oil-treated in both versions. The versions in solid wood is treated with crude linseed oil, while the plywood is treated with white pigmented kitchen table oil.
Both can simply be cleaned by wiping with a damp cloth and vacuuming the cords.
If the wood loses its shine or becomes rye-and-dry, the chair can be re-treated with the above mentioned oil-types and optionally sanded before with grain 220 paper.
Over time, the cords may become a bit loose. It is irrelevant to daily use, but from an aesthetically viewpoint, some would think the cords should be tight. Therefore, the chair is designed so that it is possible to re-tightening the cords. The cords are strong and stretch-stable with their nylon core. Therefore, if they become loose, it is due to tightening in the windings during use. The back and seat are braided in one piece, which starts midway between the seat and back in the right side of the chair. From here, the cords are separately clamped, ending at the at the outer point of the back and seat of the chair respectively. There is a small piece of string under the windings, with an approximately 10cm long end placed between the cords. This is used for tensioning(see video). Alternatively, you can simply equalize the tension in the cords in the same way as you do the tightening. The chair is fitted as standard with a slightly softer tension in the back than in the seat.
Story – From WAVE to X
The sketches for the very first chair, was a lounge chair in steel and leather with a frame that was based on a laser-cut stainless-steel plate, which is subsequently bent into shape – thus the name “Wave”. The design was to be fitted with a single leather cushion without padding. Just like my inspiration, the PK22 by Poul Kjærholm.
The principle behind the design stems from an idea to make a whole series of furniture and accessories (candlesticks, tableware etc.), all of which could be cut out from one plate, thus optimising the use of materials.
All designs in the series are bent at different angles from the same direction. I have named it the WAVE-Series, but it has never seen the light of day because I do not have the liquidity to realise the series.
Challenge to myself
Starting out with an idea of making a distributed design, I wanted to create a design where everyone could download my drawings together with a production guide, and for a small fee for the drawings as well as per unit produced, and then do the product themselves.
It turned into the WATERFALL X-Chair. However, I was so excited by the visual expression of the WATERFALL X-Chair that I decided to create a design based on my inspiration, but with a wooden frame. Ribs were replaced by stretched cords. And that’s how my new X-Chair was created.
INSPIRED by Poul Kjærholm
It wasn’t until I finished the first prototype of the X-Chair that I realized that I wasn’t only inspired by the PK22. More or les unknowingly I was also inspired by Poul Kjærholm’s graduation project from the Royal Academy of Art – the PK25.
PK25 is a chair made in one piece – just like my WAVE-Chair, and consists of stretched cords just like my X-Chair developed into.
In other words, I can see that the subconscious has once again played me a plaster, just like the time when I drew a lamp similar to Verner Panton’s Moon Lamp. While my UFO Lamp was a 100% unconscious “rib-off”, the question then is whether to say the same about my X-Chair. I don’t think so, because while Poul Kjærholm’s steel frame bears the impression of being grounded in industrial design, my X-Chair is more based on proud Danish carpentry traditions.
Of course, the DIY fans should not be cheated, so I will do construction drawings and guidance for the WATERFALL X-Chair when I have the time – whether the WAVE-Series will ever see the light of day is another question that remains to be answered.