The MIFF Furniture Design Competition is one that has been running annually for the past 10 years. Over this period of time, nearly 2000 design students and young professionals have stepped forward to submit their designs and sketches in a bid to win the opportunity to showcase their innovative ideas before a global audience of furniture manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers, industry influencers and industry media.
This time round, the theme of the competition was ‘The Millenials Workspace Furniture’. Participants were asked to come up with any type of furniture in workspace designed for commercial and home office such as office seating, work stations, partition, storage system, furniture in discussion area and more.
This year, one of The One Academy’s talented youths, Noviaputri Wijaksana had participated in the MIFF FDC 2019 and bagged the second prize. Her design titled ‘Dele’ incorporated various plants or natural elements into it to provide a fresh outlook on furniture. When asked about what she did to prepare for the competition, she replied that consultations and research was vital. Through research she could successfully identify the current needs and problems that the furniture market was facing and come up with an appropriate solution.
Besides that, she also stressed on the importance of time management. “I made a good timetable, managed work and prayed for the best”, she recounted. The ideas and inspiration started flowing in after thorough research and discussion with lecturers, people from the industry, fellow interior friends and more. To her, the most memorable part of the competition was the development of the prototype. She had made the prototype back in her hometown in Indonesia, and she was clueless on how to go about it at first. After trial and error which included visits to experts in the acrylic industry, she created a 1:5 scale of her 2d design. “It was truly an eye-opening experience for me as I got to speak to and get advice from many different people within the industry”, said Noviaputri.
However, it was not all smooth sailing as she encountered her fair share of challenges along the way. One of the hurdles faced was time management as the duration of the competition was during her final year, which is known to be one of the most demanding periods of study. She also cited lack of ideas as a challenge faced. Noviaputri overcame all this by persevering and dedicating her time to accomplish her goal. Her advice to future participants is to really commit to doing the research required. “Go into details such as target market, efficiency of design, how to use it, what are the innovations or modern mechanism available on the market, types of materials and more. Consult with lecturers and people from the industry and test your design out on friends. By doing so, you will understand whether it is user-friendly or otherwise”, she stated.