Launched at Stockholm Design Week less than a week ago, the Layered Chair from Farg & Blanche has already won a FORM +1 Award, and rightly so. I met Fredrik Färg and Emma Marga Blanche at 2013’s Stockholm Design Week and was delighted to have the opportunity to pop in and see them again this year. When I met them last, they’d just pooled resources and bought each other an industrial sewing machine for Christmas. They’ve clearly been playing with it since!
Keen to see just how far they could push their new toy, they started with leather, worked up to a material usually used for insulation (seen below) and finally, the inevitable happened and they tried wood. I’ve seen embroidered wood before, but only where it has been created by hand sewing through pre-drilled holes. Fredrik and Emma actually push wood through their super-duper sewing machine.
“We work a lot with textiles and sewing, so we wanted to experiment with sewing, but without the textiles – we wanted to use our sewing machine with hard materials. It’s sewn right through the wood. The technology is really recent, so we wanted to show what’s possible. This is a really experimental collection, but we’ve been talking to producers,” said Emma.
Fredrik added, “We’ve had the idea for a long time, but even we didn’t know if it would work, and it didn’t really work at the beginning – it’s taken a long time to make it work. We call it wood tailoring – there is a feeling of cutting it in 2D and putting it together like a suit. People don’t believe that the layers are actually sewn together. We have to take the whole piece into the machine – you get one shot at getting it right. It feels organic in a way, like contours on a map, or growth rings in a tree. It’s nice to find an organic way to work with wood that suits our work with textiles.”