Furniture Design – X and W Tables
Furniture design and fabrication has always been an instantly gratifying way to practice my craft, and it reinforces my belief that design can bring creative solutions to practical problems with sometimes artful results.
This fall I decided to give myself a small furniture design assignment.
Limiting myself to the simple use of one material and a series of quick sketches, I developed the “X” and “W” tables, which I then crafted from welded plate steel, painted with pearl enamel, and American Walnut in a natural oil finish.
The first table, nicknamed the “X” because it’s shape, was designed simply because I have the tendency to take a coffee table and turn it diagonally when I am seated at a couch. When drawn flat in any direction it forms…well… the shape of an X. As an economy to production it is actually created from four identically shaped pieces of steel welded along their edges in a looping fashion. The torqued shape of the tables appear to take on evolving profiles as you move around them, sometimes seeming to balance on one leg, balance slightly off-kilter, or with a bit of whimsy, suggest walking. In concept they are meant to nest together creating a single long table or bench that individual pieces can be removed from and be used independently.
The “W” is the X’s more utilitarian cousin. It was designed to clear the tabletop of the magazines that tend to accumulate in my living room and store them neatly in racks below. The legs were sized to width of an ordinary magazine and the W-shaped geometry allows the magazine’s to lean neatly against either side of the table for easy viewing.
Time spent in the shop with focus on the task at hand is always fun and rewarding. I hope to find more of it so that I can produce a few of the other furniture designs I have gathering in my notebook.
- Photography: Jane Messinger, Jonathan Chace