RIFMO is a minimalist stool and bench created by Tokyo, Japan, designed by Torafu Architects. The project is a prototype of a stool and a bench showcasing the textures and malleability of RIFMO’s recycled textile materials. Discarded clothes are processed into felt to which heat and pressure are applied to produce RIFMO textile boards that are lighter than veneered plywood and that can be easily bent. While the boards have the hard looking appearance of marble, random colorful strains of fibers rise from the surface, giving a nice feel to the touch. Moreover, no two boards are alike due to the overlapping of colored fibers. Taking hints from the material’s characteristics, the designers proposed a stool and a bench of simple construction made from long RIFMO boards to which wires were fixed to keep the shape in place. The stool is 12.8mm thick and is made using a single wire. Since the bench has a span of about 1,500mm, they strengthened the structure by passing two wires in a diagonal brace and kept the thickness as thin as possible at 19.2mm. The corner radius was set to fit in a user’s hand so that a hand could easily rest on it. Torafu envisioned furniture that gently fits the form of the body by bending lightly under the person sitting.
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