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Bowl designed for decorative houseware inspired by paper folded geometries


1 month independent project at MIT, Spring 2018, Cambridge, MA, USA

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The aim of this project was to develop a unique process to design and create a bowl.  My product inspiration was focused on iconic pieces from brands such as Alessi and Georg Jensen.  I wanted to achieve the same level of elegance and creativity exhibited in their pieces.

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Alessi Blow Up Bowl

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Georg Jensen Crash Tray

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Alessi Mediterraneo Bowl

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Georg Jensen Triple Cobra Tray

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Alessi Stanza Bowl

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Georg Jensen Cobra Tray


I was also inspired by the geometries and patterns of paper folding sculptures.  I looked into 2D and 3D folded geometries from artists such as Richard Sweeney and MIT's Professor Erik Demaine.

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Richard Sweeney paper folded sculpture

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Erik Demaine paper folded sculpture

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Matt Shlian paper folded sculpture

I wanted to recreate the geometric, repeating, contours and patterns for my vessel design.  I started by folding my own pieces to understand how to make and manipulate different contours and geometries.

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Drawing measurement guides

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Folding construction lines

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Folding construction lines

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Final paper folded pattern



I chose plaster as my prototyping medium.  I wanted to capture the folded geometries in vessel form by pouring plaster over the folded patterns.

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Wrap around effect

Plaster and paper mould setup

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Pouring plaster over paper mould

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Pouring plaster over paper mould

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Final plaster piece



I repeatedly experimented with pouring plaster over folded paper.  I tried different patterns of folds and plaster consistencies to better understand the medium and process.  Due to the fluid nature of the plaster, each creation had a striking contrast between the organic shape of the poured outline and the crispness of the folded lines.

Once I had a better understanding of the material and method, I started developing pieces that were concaved mimicking a bowl shape.  I had to iterate significantly to find the right pouring technique and plaster consistency to achieve something that was aesthetically beautiful.

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I developed illustrations to show the creation process and the intended use.  Here, the conceptual material portrayed is plaster, however in practice the material would need to be a stronger material to withstand holding dry objects and everyday handling, and a potentially a non-porous material for use with liquid substances.

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1. Flat paper

2. Folded paper

3. Orientate paper

4. Pour plaster over paper

5. Cover paper in plaster

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6. Let plaster dry

7. Peel paper off

8. Final plaster piece

Plaster piece holding liquid

Plaster piece pouring liquid

Product Concept


After developing several prototypes, I created a CAD model based on the general form of the plaster prototypes.  I explored several options for the orientation and material depending on how the vessel is used as decorative houseware.

Final Rendering


I created a conceptual rendering in Keyshot of the 3D model as a polished stainless steel fruit bowl as inspired by the metallic abstract designs from Alessi and Georg Jensen


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