Event report

January 14, 2021

A uniquely Thai perspective gives Japanese wood new potential in a modern world

  • FabCafe is supporting the Would Change Challenge! We are looking for ideas from Japan and abroad for unprecedented experiences, communicative tools and uses of Japanese wood. Entries can take any form, including concept images, videos, prototypes as well as products, service, and community activities which have not entered the market. 

    Entry period: WED, NOV 18, 2020 – MON, FEB 15, 2021
    For more information and to apply:
    Would Change Challenge AWRD Application Page

On December 23 (Wed) FabCafe Bangkok held the Would Change Challenge (WCC) Ideathon at FabCafe Bangkok, located inside the Thailand Creative and Design Center. At the WCC Ideathon, sponsored by the Japan Federation of Wood-Industry Associations, the focus was to understand and create new ideas for Japanese wood and trees through the lens of unique Thai-culture and recent trends.

Ideas were gathered under three categories: #materiality (to change the way we utilize the characteristics of wood), #activity (to change the relationship between wood and people) and #storytelling (to change people’s impressions when using wood). What never before imagined situations and experiences of wood could be discovered in this short yet intense ideathon?

Would Change Challenge Ideathon at FabCafe Bangkok Video

A one-day design thinking workshop resulting Thai-inspired ideas, crossing wood with storytelling, olfactory design, material science and more..

The WCC Ideathon was organized and led by FabCafe Co-founder Samustpon Tanapant and FabCafe Bangkok team member and WCC Ideathon organizer, Fakram Buasai. Samustpon Tanapant is a Lecturer for Architecture and Planning at Thammasat University and has been the FabCafe Chief Operating Officer for just over six years. At Bangkok Design Week 2020, Samustpon and Fakram showcased their own individual prototypes, ‘Foresee’, a solar-panelled, bluetooth-integrated smart helmet, and ‘Cactus’, which uses solar power to collect solar energy to heat water for a one-stop coffee popup, so these two are not strangers to coming up with new ideas!

The participants in the WCC Ideathon came from a diverse background and included art directors, researchers, designers. University students alongside faculty members from Silapakorn University, Chulalongkorn University and Thammasat University challenged wood innovation from a product design, architecture and chemistry-based approach. After all, who better than the next generation to give a fresh and not-yet explored perspective on wood, an already long-established material?

The ideation process


At the heart of the design thinking process is ideation. In ideation, instead of starting from the solution idea, participants consider the human-centered aspects of the challenge. To kick off the ideation session, Workshop Facilitator Fakram led a three part icebreaker: first, “What is love?”, second, “What is wood?” and finally, how do we merge and summarize these very broad but deep themes. Setting the tone for the day from this romantic yet thought-provoking lens provided a refreshing and very human moment just at the start of the day’s innovation process.

In order to define the topic for each team, participants analyzed the challenge by ideating on what is unique to Thai culture and what are some of the behaviors relevant to this discussion. Crossing these Thai-specific cultural points and behaviors with current trends and emotional aspects provided a fruitful ideation session upon which to discover new ideas.

Concept sketch designing

Bridging the gap between rough ideas to producing a concept sketch requires considerable research, creativity and communication prowess. Concept sketches capture the essence of the idea, where various intentional elements, including the core design characteristics and the design’s function, can be presented in a single sketch. What crazy ideas were developed into a feasible concept at the WCC Ideathon? From a broad and inspiring selection of concept sketches, we have curated three ideathon outputs below!:

 

Ideas to change the way we would use wood

LUCKY AROMA

  • Idea: LUCKY AROMA

    LUCKY AROMA is capturing behavior and beliefs at once. Mixed with the color of the chemical reaction, the smoke can change color according to the coating (encapsulate), such as blue from copper chloride and red from Strontium Chloride. Lucky Aroma lets the user relax in the morning with aroma while the user checks their lucky color of the day.

    By: Nutcha Shamasoonthorn x FabCafe Bangkok
    Theme: #materiality #storytelling

XYCOAL

  •  

  • Idea: XYCOAL

    Xycoal brings an end to the era of mineral water from the mountains and marks the beginning of the mineral water era from wood. XYLEM, or wood when under pressure, transforms into a natural water filter that comes with special minerals, properties and scents. Xycoal: Create a new dimension of drinking water.

    By: Jetsada Wongwanjaroen x FabCafe Bangkok
    Theme: #materiality #storytelling

Keen to eat CLEAN

  • Idea: KEEN to eat CLEAN

    KEEN to eat CLEAN is an experiment to process paper used in food wrapping to absorb excess oil. This product uses the same principle of a “wood sponge” that removes lignin and hemicellulose. The cellulose skeleton is removed and the porosity of the material structure is increased by hydrophobic coating, causing the oil in the food to be sucked into the paper. Reduces calories and very health conscious!

    By: Nawapon Sojaiwong x FabCafe Bangkok
    Theme: #materiality #storytelling

Thanks to all the participants who joined the WCC Ideathon! Do you have an idea to challenge wood? Applications for the Would Change Challenge is open until February 15th. Interested to hear from the experts about Japanese wood, innovations in wood-centered design, and how designers are looking at wood from new and previously unexplored perspectives? Join us on February 2nd for the online Would Change Challenge Meetup, hosted by FabCafe Bangkok. See details below and we look forward to seeing you there!

  • Join us February 2nd online to hear from various Thai experts about how designers and artists can challenge how we think about and use Japanese wood and trees.

    WHEN: February 2nd, 16:00-19:00 (Bangkok-time)
    WHERE: Online using Zoom
    SIGNUP: FabCafe Bangkok Facebook event page

Author

  • Kelsie Stewart

    FabCafe CCO

    Born in the United States, graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelors of Science in Psychology (2009) and a Masters of Arts in Religion (2015). Kelsie has been in the specialty coffee world as a barista and espresso trainer since 2008 and was introduced to FabCafe as an espresso trainer through coffee friends shortly after FabCafe’s opening in 2012. She joined Loftwork and FabCafe in 2017.

    Kelsie oversees the FabCafe Global network. In FabCafes across Asia, Europe and America, Kelsie strategizes and aligns Fab synergies to empower everyone to take the initiative to make and share their ideas with local and global communities. Kelsie is also the Tokyo organizer for the Global Goals Jam (GGJ), a two-day designathon and community which aims to create short term solutions for the Sustainable Development Goals. Kelsie has organized sustainability and design thinking workshops in Tokyo, Bangkok and Hong Kong.

    Born in the United States, graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelors of Science in Psychology (2009) and a Masters of Arts in Religion (2015). Kelsie has been in the specialty coffee world as a barista and espresso trainer since 2008 and was introduced to FabCafe as an espresso trainer through coffee friends shortly after FabCafe’s opening in 2012. She joined Loftwork and FabCafe in 2017.

    Kelsie oversees the FabCafe Global network. In FabCafes across Asia, Europe and America, Kelsie strategizes and aligns Fab synergies to empower everyone to take the initiative to make and share their ideas with local and global communities. Kelsie is also the Tokyo organizer for the Global Goals Jam (GGJ), a two-day designathon and community which aims to create short term solutions for the Sustainable Development Goals. Kelsie has organized sustainability and design thinking workshops in Tokyo, Bangkok and Hong Kong.

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