Growing a Crystal Chair

maybe a table top would be cheaper and more effective, let’s call it “the Venus Altar”

By: Diy maven DIY Maven

Her name is Venus. She is a chair. Her creator, Tokuji Yoshioka, submerges her ‘polyester elastomer skeleton’ into an aquarium and gradually grows her natural crystalline epidermis fit for the goddess she is. Glorious. Via.

Tokujin shows us how his Venus Chair was being grown from a water tank for his Second Nature Exhibition in Tokyo.

According to Tokujin,

“…a design is not something that is completed through being given a form, but rather something that is completed by the human heart. I also feel that incorporating the principles and movements of nature into ideas will become something important in future design…”

Tokujin used some spongy like fiber structure to control the crystallization process into the chair.

“…In the face of serious global issues, including disruption of nature, I think that each individual today has higher consciousness on the waste and environmental problems… As a designer, I have pondered what design can do in this time of change. I believe that to realize a beauty of the earth is one of the ways to look at such environmental issues. I would be pleased if this exhibition will somewhat become an opportunity to increase awareness of the earth.”

all images © tokujin yoshioka

This somehow makes me relate to how can I create my bio-architecture that symbiosis with diatoms as Silica (“crystal”) and Sulfate (that being used by Hiorns) are two main nutrients consumed by diatoms. Manipulating crystallization in form-making process with diatom’s foods (nitrate, sulfate and silica) enables me to control the diatom cultivation in an architectured condition. In another words, crystallization could be used as a methodology in making the form-work for future diatoms growth that will eventually form a layer of silicon-based skin on the outer layer or fill up spaces within the crystal, which dedicates colours, architectural services (as electronic circuits, oxygen provider/CO2 digestor and etc) and cybernetic functions to the design. A matured system will eventually become a self-sustaining micro-ecology system where ‘crystal’ plays a role that similar to earth that provides foods and space for diatoms, then frustule (skeleton) of dead diatoms that made of silica will deposit and ‘fertilize’ the ecological system.

Posted by by H. Shin at 2.3.09

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diy project: driftwood rack

i couldn’t resist adding another driftwood related diy project from jess chamberlain at sunset magazine. i’m tempted to call my parents and see if they can send me some driftwood from the beach at home. the steps are simple so i’ve posted the whole project right here. enjoy! [thanks, jess!]

Project: Driftwood Rack

Turn a scavenged piece of driftwood into an organic-chic entryway rack in 30 minutes or less. (For regulations on collecting driftwood, check with your local state beach authority.)

    1. Our piece of driftwood happened to lie flat against the wall; if yours doesn’t, use a band saw to cut off one-third of the driftwood lengthwise.
    2. With four round hook screws (available at home improvement stores) and a handheld electric drill, drill four holes into the bottom of your driftwood, angling them forward slightly so the hooks won’t lean against the wall. Use a drill bit the width of your screw’s shank.
    3. With the help of a wrench, screw the hook ends into the wood, tightening them so they all face forward.
    4. Secure your driftwood to a wall using two long screws, spaced so each is secured in a wall stud.

By Jess Chamberlain (More projects by Jess at Sunset right here)
Photograph by Rob D. Brodman

Read more at Design*Sponge

we like it wild: faux staghorn ferns

We love the look of staghorn ferns. Unlike most ferns that grow from the ground, staghorn ferns make root in the nooks and crannies of other plants, on bark and branches. When taken out of their natural environment, their antler-like fronds look amazing mounted in a grouping on a wall, but sometimes maintenance of these living sculptures can be daunting. We decided we wanted a quick and clean way to have our own collection of staghorns. Using just some craft paper, glue and a few other craft supplies you can create your own hanging herd in no time. This project is perfect if you’ve got some little hands looking for a project to give to pops this Father’s Day, no green thumbs required. –Studio Choo

CLICK HERE for the full how-to (and downloadable template) after the jump!

Materials (for 1 plaque):

2 sheets 8.5×11 green cardstock or medium weight paper

2 pieces of 12” thin gauge wire (optional)

small wood plaque or disc (available at craft stores)

dried moss



spray adhesive or glue

hot glue gun

staghorn fern template


1. Print template and cut out “antler” shape.

2. Fold sheet of paper in half to get a clean crease, then open flat again.

3. Position the template on one half of the paper with the largest curve along the outside edge. Trace a pencil line along the curve- you will use this line as a guide to position the wire. (if you don’t want to use the wire inside for extra curve- skip step 5,6,7)

4. In a well-ventilated area cover the inside of the paper (the side you drew the line on) with an even coating of spray glue (follow directions on can).

5.  Trickiest part: using the pencil line as a guide, position the wire ¼” TO THE SIDE of the line, towards the fold of the paper. You want the wire to be INSIDE the template area when you trace it- not right on the edge. It is ok if the wire extends past the paper on the bottom (this end will be attached to the plaque) but on the top of the curve you’ll want to make sure the wire gets fully enclosed in the paper. Trim wire as necessary so it does not extend past the edge of the template (ideally about ¼ inch from the edge).

6. Once you have the wire in position re-fold the paper and firmly press all around, taking special care to seal the wire inside. Don’t press too hard on the wire or the paper may tear- just hard enough to see the outline.

7.  (See photo 5, first below) Place the template on top of the paper- lining up the side with the wire curve. Lightly rub the template so you can see where the wire is underneath. If the wire extends past the template- just extend the tip of the antler a bit when you are tracing to make sure the wire is fully enclosed. (see photo 7, third below)

8. Lightly trace the template with a pencil.

9. Carefully cut out along your pencil lines. Erase any visible lines when you are done cutting.

10. Repeat above steps for the second antler.

11. Lightly bend and shape the wire to give the ferns a nice curve. You can also shape the tips of the ferns by gently curling them with your fingers.

12. Make a small fold on the bottom of the fern that will sit flat against the plaque. Trim any excess paper and wire- you’ll want a flat section of about ¼”- ½” to position on the plaque and secure with hot glue.

13. Glue a small area of dried moss around the base to hide the connection spot.

Read more at Design*Sponge


branch clothes hanger