Market and brand analysis
There are already a lot of different solutions available. A mapping of the market highlighted that there was an opportunity in developing a versatile as well as portable product. In addition, being for the French brand Fermob, the project required an analysis of their values and codes. Fermob is reputed for its quality indoor and outdoor steel and aluminium furniture. The products are simple yet colourful and clever.
A portable desk, but what else?
The initial idea was to create a product with 2 purposes: firstly to use for work and another when it does not function as a worktop. Initial sketches explored a variety of shapes, characteristics and functionalities. Research and ideation led to the idea of a worktop transformable into a tray when turned over.
Quick and dirty process
Bringing the portable desk into the real world meant changing proportions that looked correct in 3D. This meant model making and fast prototyping to get a sense of the size and ergonomics in both positions. Different forms and types of pivot were also tested. A functional 1:1 scale prototype was built to validate the concept and a more refined 1:2 model was made for presentation purposes.
Particular attention was devoted to the pivot at the 4 corners of the worktop, which enabled switching from one purpose to the other. The parts needed to articulate easily but as a worktop, a locking mechanism was needed to secure its stability, preventing the table from tipping over. Various systems and kinematics were studied, leading to a special oval pivot with a notch to solve the problem.
Nomad - Product visualisation
Some in-context renders were made to show how this product could fit in an interior, in different situations. These renders are also intended to show how Nomad is able to blend in nicely next to other Fermob's pieces of furniture.