A team from Design Engine took a trip to NeoCon 2017 this week to experience what’s new and what’s next in the commercial design industry. Neocon is a yearly interior design convention that serves as a gathering place for the design community’s key players. For the past five decades, Neocon has been a launch pad for the future of design. This year we were able to get an exclusive look at what’s next in the field of design, and we want to share with you our favorite find.
We explored almost every inch of NeoCon’s nine floors of showrooms, and reveled in the innovative designs we encountered. However, our favorite find of the convention was in a modest-sized showroom by Cabot Wrenn. Their Soak line of couches caught my co-worker’s eye, because it used the most peculiar material for the backing of the couch. As opposed to a wooden or simple cushion backing, Cabbot Wren uses ezoBord, which is a polyester, semi-rigid material that is made of 40% post consumer, and 100% recyclable material.
Cabot Wrenn’s lead designer even gave us the inside scoop on the design! The couch itself is shaped like a bathtub, hence the name Soak. He explained that the couch’s oblong shape allows for users to sit in the more private end of the couch with higher sides, or sit on the lower-sided end that allows for more socialization. The ezoBord material that they use is sound absorbing, and provides users with a quiet, and comfortable acoustic environment. The Soak line is one of Cabot Wrenn’s most eccentric products, as they are typically more traditional in their core. The Soak couch is housed in a robust wood frame, and has a more formal outward appearance. However, the user experience of Soak is much more informal, due to the semi-rigid backing, cozy cushions, and sound absorbing material.
When asked about the origins of using ezoBord in their designs, he told us that he stumbled across the material at Neocon 2016. When he came across the ezoBord section on the seventh floor of the convention, he was struck by the quality of the material and its multi-purpose abilities. Although ezoBord is not traditionally used for furniture, he wanted to be the first in integrating it into Cabot Wrenn’s designs. The successful output of this was the Soak line.
We were fascinated by the material after talking to their lead designer, so we decided to dig a little deeper and go visit ezoBord ourselves. After navigating the maze that is Neocon, we found the ezoBord installation on the seventh floor, just as in the previous year. The section was lined with ezoBord material, which made it much quieter than the rest of the convention. As we walked into their installation, we experienced the sounds of the convention dissolve into a murmur. When speaking to a sales representative, we learned that the material absorbed 75% of the sound that went into it. The material is both recycled and recyclable, made from at least 40% post consumer material such as plastic water bottles.
ezoBord is typically used in commercial environments, such as offices, hotels, bars, restaurants, and colleges. Despite its main uses, the founder of the company was a musician, whose original intention for the material was in music studios.
Its no surprise that this durable, sound absorbing material caught our attention, with its multi-use ability, durability, and flexible composition, not to mention its beautiful appearance, with clean lines and a variety of colors. We look forward to seeing Cabbot Wren and ezoBord’s future work!
Learn how to create incredible designs, such as the designs in the Soak line through Design Engine’s many courses. Cabbot Wrenn uses Rhino, and Solidworks, check out our course offerings in these tools in the links below:
We’ve linked Cabbot Wrenn, and ezoBord’s websites below for your convenience:
Author: Paige Gawrys, Business Development Intern
Images By: Juliana Privitera, NeoCon, and ezoBord