Interactive furniture is a growing trend I’ve always been interested in, but until becoming a mother, I didn’t realize quite how beneficial it was for children. The idea that our surroundings can offer multi-dimensional purposes and functions (and even serve as learning tools!) is fascinating for both young and old, and I can’t help but think it might subconsciously be teaching us to pay greater attention to the things we interact with on a daily basis.
Take industrial designer Christina Sicoli’s Asterisk stool, for instance. Imagined to be assembled without any tools, the stool’s structure is completed by the joining of 17 interlocking pieces – a life-size puzzle for kids! Because each shape corresponds to a color notched into the stool’s base, children can learn about colors, construction, scale and shape while nesting the geometric shapes together. Brilliant, yes?
I love picturing a child playing with the pieces independently for a bit, then “cleaning up” while reassembling the stool and sitting on it to enjoy an afternoon snack! Multi-purpose play at its best.
The stool isn’t available for purchase yet, but I often think the beauty of a protocol is less about owning the object and more about imagining the possibilities. And of course, being married to a woodworker enthusiast means my ears perk up more than usual when I find well-designed wooden objects. You’re reading this, right Ken?
Image Credit: Christina Sicoli
p.s. Just for fun: 100 wooden cars and the ultimate wooden toy gift guide.