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Magnetic furniture future of design?

A set of magnetic furniture from Benjamin Vermeulen.

Courtesy of Benjamin Vermeulen

A set of magnetic furniture from Benjamin Vermeulen.

Magnetic furniture which snaps together without the need for a single screwdriver could be the future of the flat-pack interiors industry.

The ‘MAG’ (Magnetic Assisted Geometry) range by Benjamin Vermeulen first debuted at Dutch Design Week in October this year and has been causing quite a stir within the design world of late.

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The collection includes a chair, desk and a set of modular cabinets, all of which are held in place by powerful magnets and can be assembled and disassembled repeatedly without any effect on the pieces’ structural integrity.

Minimalist steel sheets and wooden frames form the main components of each piece, lending the range an industrial vibe, with options such as glass available as cabinet doors.

The chair snaps into place with heavy-duty magnets.

Courtesy of Benjamin Vermeulen

The chair snaps into place with heavy-duty magnets.

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The table is held together by metal pegs which slot into magnetic leg tubes, while the chair seat simply clips into place on its two-part frame.

“Shipping furniture unassembled is more economical and more environmentally friendly,” said the Dutch designer.

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“But flat-packed furniture is often made from low-grade material and its assembly is far from straightforward.”

Steel sheets and wooden frames held together by magnets make easy-to-assemble furniture.

Courtesy of Benjamin Vermeulen

Steel sheets and wooden frames held together by magnets make easy-to-assemble furniture.

Vermeulen’s invention, which is not yet in large-scale production, is the latest in a series of innovative developments which attempt to move away from the traditional flat-pack construction process.

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In 2012 Belgian studio Noumenon unveiled a prototype for self-assembling furniture which expands into its form ‘like popcorn’ when ‘baked’.

The creation of designer Carl de Smet, the chair is made from shape memory polyurethane, a type of memory foam.

“The idea is that you can buy it in a local store,” de Smet told the BBC earlier this year. “It’s a small package, you put it under your arm, and you carry it home because it’s also super light.

“Then at home you plug it into electricity,” he said. “Ten minutes later your chair will be ready.”

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Lifestyle – NY Daily News

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