Students were charged with designing an environmentally friendly product that reflects the brand and can be produced using sustainable furniture manufacturing practices. Students produced miniature models and product display boards for market attendees to vote on during the High Point Market. The four student designs were voted “Most marketable” and “Most likely to show a profit” by retailers, interior designers and trade professionals attending market.
Ami Sueki, a senior in industrial design, was named one of the four winners with her project “Goza Side Table/Chair” which was built with reclaimed wood.
Sueki, along with the other winners, received a $250 cash prize along with permanent royalties for life.
“I was very surprised when I got the message from Chris [founder of Groovystuff] about the award. I am excited to see one of my designs coming to life,” Sueki says. “The challenge about a sponsor project was to design according the aesthetics of the sponsor, but also include my own taste to it at the same time. And I would love to explore furniture design in the future if I get more opportunities.”
“Ami’s design reflects balance contrast that I set as a project direction. It is not easy to design modern-looking furniture using reclaimed wood, but she did it!” says Jin. “ The strong contrast, colored wood combination with a simple geometric angular shape created a unique chair style.”
The contest “Groovystuff by Design: Connecting Education with Industry Challenge” was created to introduce graduates to the residential home furnishings industry. In stage one of the contest, students competed for the “popular vote” and a cash prize at the High Point or Las Vegas wholesale furniture markets, where Groovystuff maintains permanent showrooms. Stage two of the process sees the winning innovative designs from stage one put into production and launched six months later at the following wholesale market. The student prototypes will then compete for the grand prize of “Most Orders Written at Market” and the winner rewarded with an additional cash prize, inclusion in the celebrity endorsed Dick Idol Legends Collection, permanent royalties for life, and motivation to join the residential home furnishings industry.