How to Make Bamboo Walls with Plyboo Plywood

September 8, 2011 in Uncategorized

You’ve seen them in magazines like Dwell, Architectural Record, and Sunset. They’re green, they’re beautiful and, let’s face it, they’re sexy. Bamboo walls are undeniably modern and easily adaptable to virtually any residential or commercial space.  The best part is that you can replicate these looks with ease. Look no further than a sheet of Smith & Fong’s Plyboo bamboo plywood.

Look no further than a sheet of Plyboo’s bamboo plywood.  Plyboo clearly has you covered for bamboo flooring, but with a little artistic vision and a conversation with your fabricator, you’ll soon find yourself teleported into the design major league.

Smooth and Simple

Bamboo plywood can be used like any other decorative plywood panel.  Frequently, bamboo plywood is installed with clips.  Z clips as they are known are part of an integrated clip and grid system that is fasten to the existing structural wall.   Believe it or not, we use this system frequently at our trade shows. It’s easy to install, set up and take down, and is sturdy enough for a permanent installation as well.

Using the clip system can really save time and cost on an installation, however, if you find that you’re not quite so skilled with home improvements, there are wall systems professionals that can help with large or small renovations.  Just do a Google or Bing search for “wall systems installers” and contact with them locally.

 

Did you know that there’s a service that specializes in installing wall systems only?  Run a search on Google, Bing, or any search engine platform and you’ll be presented with several companies that can assist you with your wall installation.  They’ll know exactly what to do if you explain what you’re after, so if in doubt, always keep this as an option.

The beauty of using Plyboo to make bamboo walls is the ease of use.  Of course there are more dimensional options that the materials can be applied.  These options, however are not as simple and most likely will involve the help of a professional.

The photo above shows the bamboo walls curved to give the appearance of fluidity, like a river flowing.

It does help to have some ideas in mind.  For instance, if you live in a small space, perhaps sliding walls to add a bit of privacy or to give a feeling of spaciousness.  In the photo below, this store built out their walls to show off their products.  The walls act as shelving — a very realistic and simple option depending on your needs.

 The walls are build out to artfully display the products in this store.

High Definition Wall Panels

There are, of course, other options for wall coverings using Smith and Fong products. The answer is tambour. For those who are not familiar with the term tambour, it is used to describe a flexible paneling product. How does it work? Tambour can be any material, wood, plastic, even glass cut into thin strips and laminated to a fabric backing. There is a small reveal at the width of each strip allowing the material to form and shape to almost any surface. Tambour paneling made of bamboo or palm can be shaped around a convex, concave, circular or flat surface with great ease making it a great friend of the do-it-yourselfer.

The image above uses bamboo tambour paneling. This installation retains warmth and is very inviting.

Bamboo Alternatives

So you’ve decided to re-design the wall surfaces in your living space and you are looking for something that says “you” in a truly original way. Durapalm paneling options might just be what you are looking for.  Durapalm panels come in a tambour option as well as two other really unique and user-friendly designs. These are the palm Woven and Deco palm designs. The Woven look evokes the sense of a basket weave pattern with its undulating overlap design. The feeling is both calm and soothing. The Deco pattern on the other hand, breaks this all up with a random multi-depth surface that is modern, unpredictable and highly energized. The Deco is truly a one of a kind look and feel.

Make It Yours

Whether you’re just look for a great texture and material to surface your walls with, or if you are looking for utility and function, the DIY or professional should find the range and variety of wall solutions available.

PlybooSquared makes a Cameo on TakePart.com

July 21, 2011 in Installations, Uncategorized

As you know, PlybooSquared was featured in the EcoFabulous Modern Living House in the Dwell on Design Show in Los Angeles last month. It was a wildly successful showing, and the media center made with Plyboosquared bamboo plywood and bamboo veneer got lots of attention; it even makes a cameo in this video featured on TakePart.com.

Inside Ecofabulous’ Modern Living Showhouse from TakePart on Vimeo.

The house was recently sold on Ebay to a lucky individual.

Contact sales@plyboo.com if you’re interested in purchasing PlybooSquared plywood or veneers. For flooring visit: www.plyboo.com/plyboodirect .

Bamboo Flooring in Action

July 7, 2011 in Installations, Uncategorized

This video was posted by Kaiser Permanente and it is of their recently opened Center for Total Health – User Experience Tour. Not only is this an incredible effort at improving the health of individuals and encouraging walking, it’s also truly incredible to see what effort went into the design and how strand bamboo flooring is incorporated so effortlessly. It’s great how they’ve incorporated the touchscreen video into the user experience of the tour. Be sure to check it out if you’re in the D.C. area.

Thank you Kaiser Permanente for sharing such an informative video!

For more info about the Center for Total Health in Washington D.C. visit the website at: http://www.centerfortotalhealth.org/ .

Interview with Joel Scilley of Audio Wood

June 28, 2011 in Interview, Uncategorized

Smith & Fong Co.: So Joel, could you tell us how you got started?

Joel Scilley: Well, I started designing things like the aerodynamic truck in kindergarten, but I’ve been a designer/builder with wood for about 15 years now.  And then about 4 years ago I built my first wooden turntable, just for fun.  It was pretty popular with friends and neighbors, so I went with it, and started Audiowood.

S&F: I noticed a lot of what looks like found wood pieces, how’d you transition into using Plyboo, or simply, what drew you to the product?

J.S.:Plyboo really opens up design possibilities for me, as I’m a big fan of using solid hardwood for my designs, but have been limited by warping, expansion and other issues associated with the use of conventional lumber.  Plus, sustainable production is a central concern of mine.  I love being able to buy what is essentially a super-uniform sheet of “hardwood” that is ready to go.

S&F: What inspires your designs?

J.S.: Hard question to answer.  I think I’m most inspired by raw materials.  I suppose I’m lucky that I can actually make things out of twigs and stumps!  In the case of Plyboo, I’m inclined to make things that are very modern, but that have the warmth of wood.

S&F: Do you find it simpler to get consistent designs with the Plyboo product versus wood?

J.S.: Absolutely.  You’ll never catch me saying much against wood, but the consistency of Plyboo is unparalleled.  It’s not that I couldn’t do similar things in solid wood, but for doing things in numbers, Plyboo seems indispensable at this point.  Also, I love to integrate curves into designs at times, and having a multi-ply solid-material sheet makes this simple, with no edge-bands, grain issues, etc.

S&F: How long does it typically take you to build a system?

J.S.: Well, I wish I was plagued with this problem more often!  Usually, I’m building single pieces for people.  Some of my new designs, including most of the Plyboo things, are CNC machined by Woodlane Cabinet Co. in Tallahassee, and then hand-assembled and finished.  This process saves a little time for some things, but the minimum for a turntable is still about 4-5 hours to get it ship-ready.  On the other hand, I’ve spent 100 hours on a single piece of furniture.  If I were to build a stereo system with amp, speakers, and turntable, I imagine about a week would do it.

S&F: I see that you’ve taken a bit of a departure with your new line.  What directed you towards complete media centers, iPad mounts, etc.?

J.F.: I figure I’m making things the world can’t live without!  I guess we’ll see about that, but I’m trying to make some things that haven’t been seen before, and make them properly, with quality, sustainable materials, and domestic production.  In the case of the Aerie home theater console, I feel that there are no modern consoles out there that have integrated quality speakers, much less that wall-mount, allow for wire-free aesthetics, and are constructed out of green materials.
Similarly, with the iPad2 shelf, I don’t think there is anything out there that allows for wall and tabletop use, improves the sound of the iPad, and that doesn’t look like a Battleship “Goplastica” device.

S&F: The iPhone nest is very cute.  Would you say that it’s a good holiday gift?  Who do you feel responds best to it (what type of customer)?

J.S.: Hey thanks.  I guess if someone doesn’t want an entire audio system, then the iPhone Nest is a great alternative!  I imagine most of my things in very modern environments, where they are either integral pieces or accents.  In the case of the Nest, I imagine it will appeal most to the person who wants something handmade instead of a generic piece of plastic.

S&F: Tell me more about Glow Audio.  How did you come together to work on the bamboo stands?

J.S.: I’m a retailer for a few lines of audio equipment in addition to making my own stuff, and Glow is one of these lines.  I’m interested in audio stuff that is fun or beautiful to look at and environmentally friendly, in addition to sounding good.  Glow hits on all these points: their little tube amp sounds awesome and uses only 38 watts of power, and their Voice One speakers, made out of recycled scrap wood, are a genuinely brilliant design, inside and out.
The limitation of the Voice One orbs was that they could only be used as tabletop speakers in their stock form.  So, Glow contracted me to design several stands that would allow for more flexibility.  Again, with the help of Woodlane Cabinet Co. and their fantastic CNC, I was able to make desk, floor, and subwoofer stands that allow these great budget speakers to be used almost anywhere.  I’m especially pleased with the floor stands that are a nice blend of organic and modern, and have a cable-hiding channel up the spine (made possible by using 3-ply Plyboo for this piece).

S&F: Do you have any upcoming plans with Plyboo products?
To be honest, I’ve expended a huge amount of energy getting together this little line of bamboo things, so I’m happy for the time being.  However, I’m a tinkerer by nature, so you never know.  I would love to do some variations on these pieces, but I have to see how the initial designs do and whether the marketplace will allow me to take on other things.

J.S.: Where are you sold?
I have a few small retailers, mostly in the Southeast, and Anthropologie sells a couple of my designs.  I also have a Paypal webstore linked to my website which has most of my non-custom things listed, plus a few thing by other manufacturers.  But much of my business is still based on people calling me up, telling me what they want, and making things to order.

S&F: Which markets would you be interested in doing retail?

J.S.: I would love to have stores that are genuine fans of what I do in the major metro areas of the US and some spots abroad.  It’s a little tricky, as many of the things I do are hybrids of audio tech or just plain tech and decorative home accessory.  But I hold out hope that folks in the design world will take notice of technology that is fun to look at and use, and that audio/techy folks will realize that metal and plastic black boxes are not the only way to go.  Miami, Atlanta, NYC, Chicago, SF, and LA would be great starts!  Today Grand Ridge, tomorrow the world!

Special thanks to Joel Scilley for making this interview possible!
*All photos by Joel Scilley

PlybooSquared Media Center, Dwell on Design

June 24, 2011 in Uncategorized

Here’s a sneak peak at the Dwell On Design Modern Living house by EcoFabulous.  Why that material looks very familiar!