Latest Update : December 2013
Open source furniture design is popping up these days. Open Design means mainly two things: documentation is shared freely so that users can make their own models, furnitures are made with digital fabrication and can be reproduce in a makerspace or FabLab.
In a few words, as smartly said by the Open Design Contest initiative:
… designing and sharing products that can be made with digital fabrication. The designs are published under a Creative Commons license, so that anyone can download, use and adapt the designs, and upload derived designs again!
Take a look at more than 20 inspiring open source furnitures that you can make your own. Each design comes with a link to its online documentation.
Pod by Samuel Javelle
Never Ending Bench by Félix Lévêque
The Never Ending Bench was one of the winning design of Open Design Contest Paris organized during FabLab Squared in 2011. This bench is entirely made of wood and the pieces can be added without ending. See documentation + blueprint.
Paraseat by Maud Eisberg
Paraseat is made of pertinax board, a composite material of textile and resin, and foam-rubber. The two materials are glued together. This mobile seat can be used on any pole. Documentation + Blueprint.
Fablamp by Astrid Van Roij-Lubsen
Handmade Balans Chair by Yuichi Hirose
The Balans Chair is made of 18mm thick boards cut with a CNC milling machine. All the bars have to be assembled at the same time. This chair requires the help of many friends to be properly build. Documentation + Blueprint.
Opentap Collection by Dosuno Design
“Opentap” collection by Dosuno Design (Columbia) – Low cost furnitures to build yourself. This collection mainly uses metallic pipes and wood. No screws or adhesive required. Each design is customisable by adjusting the pipes. Documentation available here.
Italic Shelf by Ronen Kadushin
Waste Bin by Astrid Lubsen
This waste bin has been designed for and by Barcelona Design hub. It is made of waste material such as leftovers panels from the lasercutter. Panels have been picked for their graphic quality and decorated by acrylic icons. Four sides are screwed to the bottom. Documentation + Blueprint.
Sofa Table by Jeroen Dijkmeijer
Sofa Table has been designed using an online tool developed by Jeroen Dijkmeijer called iScriptDesign. You can use this customization tool to adjust the size of the table so that it fits with your own couch. The table is made of two parts: a platter and a structure. Documentation + Blueprint.
Scrap Adirondack Chair by Wohlman
This rustic chair is perfect for outdoors and chilling in the garden in summer time. It is inspired from classic Canadian Adirondack or Muskoka chairs. It is made of scrap wood pieces that are cut and screwed together. Documentation. License: CC-by-NC-SA.
Invasion Lamp by Clement Ribé, Léo Virieu and Julie Brugier
Sliced Lack Table by BrittLiv
This Sliced Lack Table is a variation from Ikea Lack table. Legs are sliced and the two long legs are screwed to the carpet for stability. It creates a surprising illusion that makes this table very special. Documentation. License: CC-by-NC-SA.
Wall Desk Chalk Board by Alaskantomboy
This work desk mounted on a wall is also a secret chalk board. It transforms your work space into a playground or a brainstorming area in a minute. It is made of pine boards and attached with chains to the wall. Documentation. License: CC-by-NC-SA.
La Pucelle by Samuel Bernier
La Pucelle is a giant match chair made of pine wood glued and screwed together. One of the legs is then burnt and spray-painted styrofoam eggs are added to the legs tips. Documentation. License: CC-by-NC-SA.
KNUFF Transformable Coffee Table by Imchaser
KNUFF is an IKEA hack using 4 sets of plywood magazine files and an artist stool. All pieces are glued together using liquid nails and screwed to the stool. Documentation.
Rok-Bak Chair by Larry Cotton
Rok-Bak Chair is an open source rocking chair. It is made of assembled plywood pieces and homemade cushions. It can be assembled and disassembled in a few minutes. Documentation.
Bookshelf Light by Berend Everdingen
Bookshelf Light is an open source light for your bookshelf. It is made of plexiglass sheets, rubber-like material, glue and a 8W fluorescent lamp. It costs around 60euros to make in a fablab. Documentation + Blueprint.
Sketch Chair by Diatom Studio
Sketch Chair is an online tool for designing open source chairs. The generated model can then be build thanks to a CNC router, laser cutter or paper cutter. Parts can be assembled by hand. Sketch Chair + Designs library.
UPDATE – Winter 2013
OpenDesk Lean Range by 00
555 Footstool Design by Evil Mad Scientist
By popular demand, Evil Mad Scientist released the design of its 555 Footstool. Files and instructions available here.
Open Design resources
Open Design Contest: this initiative was launched by the Waag Society (Amsterdam) in 2009 to make designers more aware of open design and share designs with others. Since then, 4 international contests have been launches: the Netherlands in 2009, Netherlands + Belgium + Germany in 2010, Paris in 2011 and Vienna in 2012.
Open Design City. An initiative coming from Betahaus in Berlin, Germany.
Thingiverse Furnitures Category. A library of DIY furnitures project that gathers ideas from both professional designers and neat amateurs.
Make: Projects Furniture Category. A small but very well documented library of open source furniture projects.
IKEA Hackers: hacks of IKEA furnitures