Product Runway teams are made up of designers from leading architecture firms paired with industrial design reps (and sometimes their retail or trade partners) who bring a not necessarily sewing-machine friendly set of materials to the mix. General admission tickets for the Friday, May 3 event are now sold out—but we're giving away four free tickets. More info at the end of this post.
The skills: From their office in the Elements Building in Bellevue, these architects and designers detail the interior office spaces for many a gaming company, so you know they know how to have a good time. Also worth noting: JPC started in 1986 with Microsoft, their first client, and they're the architects of record for the Smith Tower—and that fantastic Chinese Room.
KI manufactures education and office furniture.
The materials: In seeing all the hard and soft, articulated and static, colorful and not-so materials on JPC's conference room table, I really began to see that the genius of this competition lies in getting inside an ordinary thing like a cubicle partition, and using its guts to coax inventive new forms. And it also lies in seeing, and using, the obvious. When I visited, printed materials for catalogues and the like were being folded into origami butterflies and then blasted with hot, on-trend colors.
I'm not about to tell you exactly how these vibrant creatures will show up in the runway look, I'll just say the concept evokes one of nature's most enveloping processes.
More on processes: I did attempt to engage the team—who, coincidentally, took second place in the people's choice category last year—on theirs. How is crafting a Product Runway look the same or different as crafting an interior schemata for a mixed-use lobby? Rebecca Durr, Cecilia Arroyo, and others told me it's been a refreshing opportunity to really work as a team. Whereas design projects tend to be individual endeavors with group check-ins along the way, this competition requires an all-in ethic.
Now. News flash: Product Runway tickets are essentially sold out. Only VIP spots remain, but we have two sets of two to give away.
To get your name in the hat: Email it (your name, not your hat), your phone number, and your email address to RSVP@seattlemet.com.
The subject line must say Product Runway Giveaway.
Winners will be notified by email; if you haven't heard from us Friday, April 26 it means you didn't win.