Kasper Kyster handcrafts "organic" plastic furniture

Crafting Plastics chair by Kasper Kyster

Danish designer Kasper Kyster has showcased the Crafting Plastic collection of furniture, which was constructed through bending plastic sheets by hand, at 3 Days of Design.

Kyster made the pieces from two-millimetre thick PETG plastic sheets, which he heats up in order to shape them into furniture.

Chairs by Kasper Kyster
The collection includes plastic stools

“I buy these sheets that are then cut up into certain sizes,” he told Dezeen.

“And then I have a heat gun and a couple of cloths and I just heat it up, fold it, heat it up and fold it until I get these slats that I can work with.”

Crafting Plastics pieces by Kasper Kyster
Kasper Kyster wanted the Crafting Plastics pieces to have an organic feel

The shape of the furniture was also determined by the material.

“I try to make it as round as possible so it gets stronger, and the joints are also very strong – I heat up the plastic even more where it connects, so that the surface kind of melts and is welded together,” Kyster explained.

Plastic lamp by Kasper Kyster
The lamps have a slightly different shape to the other pieces

Among the 10 pieces that Kyster designed are stools and chairs, but also a large shelf, a coat rack and two lamps.

“I was focusing on trying to make the furniture pieces as archetypal as possible, so that you are more focused on the materiality and the process of it than the shape – you’re not in doubt that this is a chair and this is a stool, and so on,” he explained.

Overview of Crafting Plastics collection
The furniture is made out of PETG sheets

The lighting designs are more sculptural, as they had to be bent in a different way to function as lights.

Kyster described the Crafting Plastics collection as representing “a transformation from the industrial to the organic” and aimed for the designs to show how plastic can be used in a more craftsmanlike way.

White, blue and black Ombak chairs with armrests by Sungai Design

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“We’re used to plastic being this very industrial material that we use for casting a chair in two seconds and it’s perfectly shaped,” he said.

“But here, I tried to take it down a little and actually make it more stupid than it is,” he added.

“It actually shows us another potential of how you can use plastic in a more craft kind of way – everything is handmade and it can only be handmade for this kind of look.”

Shelf made from plastic sheets
The joints of the furniture were welded to be extra strong

The plastic that Kyster uses is comprised of 30 per cent recycled material. This is currently the highest percentage of recycled plastic he can use, as it otherwise degrades too much to be structurally useful for the furniture.

Creating something like furniture is a good way to use plastic, he argues.

“They are unique pieces, and plastic is kind of looked down upon because we’re using it in so many different ways and so many bad ways,” he said.

“But this is a good way to use it because it’s furniture and it will last forever if you’re treating it right.”

Chair made from PETG for Crafting Plastics
Kyster wanted the Crafting Plastics furniture pieces to look as archetypal as possible

Other projects on show in Copenhagen as part of the 3 Days of Design festival include products designed to address “taboo” topics and a modular storage system by String. Follow our live blog for the latest updates from the annual design event!

The photography is by Peter Vinther.

3 Days of Design takes place at venues across Copenhagen from 12 to 14 June. See our 3 Days of Design 2024 guide on Dezeen Events Guide for information about the many other exhibitions, installations and talks taking place throughout the event.

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