Herman Miller Capelli Stool designed by Carol Catalano
At A Glance: Pondering her new project - "build a better stool" - designer Carol Catalano noticed her own entwined fingers and had her answer. The Capelli stool is two identical plywood pieces, each with undulating "fingers" at the top that interlock without tools or fasteners. It's an ingeniously stable and graceful structure that's pleasant to sit on and simply beautiful to look at.
What's To Like: The Capelli Stool is a unique blend of portability and solidity. As the surfaces between the fingers meet, they become stops that hold each half of the stool firmly in place. The resultant form is beautiful to behold, and carries a lightness that just plain makes us happy.
What's Not to Like: We assume that repeated assembly and disassembly of the stool will eventually wear down the wood veneer of the "fingers." That's more of a "you should know this" than a "we don't like this."
The Bottom Line: The Capelli stool is a lyrical, imaginative place to sit that resembles a Japanese puzzle box. The "fingers" of the stool's two identical halves interlock without fasteners to form a comfortable, stable, cantilevered structure. It's a great solution to a familiar problem.
Overall: 17" h x 15.5" w x 13.125" d
Composed of 11 alternating dark and light stained hardwood inner plies and light ash veneer
The stool unfolds, and the two halves can be stacked together for easy storage
The Herman Miller Capelli Stool is also known by the following manufacturer Item Numbers: KC100.
The inspiration for Carol Catalano's innovative design came from a very down-to-earth source. "Most of my work is fairly technical in nature, so I thought it would be fun to take on a project just for fun." Catalano says. "In pondering how to improve on the simple function of a stool I found myself observing the simple act of intertwining the fingers of my hands."
From there, Catalano developed several ideas for the stool by studying the ergonomics of comfortable sitting. Using cardboard and foam models, she and her staff at Catalano Design took the Capelli stool from concept to museum-quality prototype in less than two months. "From the beginning," Catalano says, "the form of the stool was a simple curve that we kept refining until it was comfortable and beautiful."
Carol Catalano Carol finds learning about new industries one of the most challenging and rewarding aspects of her job. "I love giving artistic expression to things I've learned," she says, "and I'm always looking for ways to 'cross-pollinate.' Just the other day, for example, I was meeting with a thermoplastics supplier, and he was showing me the elastomer pellets in their raw state before they're melted down and injection molded. My immediate reaction was to think, how can we use these pellets in other applications?"
Catalano likes to push the current boundaries of her field and has made a commitment to include much more thinking about the end user's experience in all her designs. "It's much different now than when I first started out," she says. "It used to be about just creating a good design. Now the first thing I think about in any project is how I can simplify and enrich people's lives."
Herman Miller is an industry leader in the integration of cutting edge technology to furniture and other household items to make everyday life more comfortable, convenient, and stylish. Herman Miller stands out at the forefront of such fields as ergonomic technologies, environmentally friendly manufacturing processes, and customizable furniture items.
In addition to producing some of the most outstanding office furniture in the world, Herman Miller has also taken on the responsibility of manufacturing some of the most celebrated furniture designs by some of the world's most famous designs. These "modern classics" include works by Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, and Isamu Noguchi. Herman Miller celebrates these famous mid-century designers' works through its extraordinarily precise manufacturing techniques and industry-leading green production processes.
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