Insight

The Blue Pine furniture is designed for Far Coast, Coca-Cola Company's official coffee brewer of the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Far Coast is the brand that inspires social and cultural connections - freshly brewed one cup at time. The strategic framework of our furniture collection is to reinforce the brand’s ability to warm people up individually and collectively.

The furniture was used in major Far Coast venues and installations in the Athletes' Villages, various Olympic stadiums, and throughout Whistler and the Lower Mainland during the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.

Responsibilities

I worked as an Industrial Designer and my design team's goal was to create a relaxing social environment that is sustainable, elegant, and culturally diverse to promote the Far Coast brand.

We developed the design concepts for our manufactured furniture that people use every day. My deliverables are rapid prototyping (foam core, cardboard, and pine wood), AutoCAD drafts, ergonomics, user research, case scenarios, and usability testing.


  • Client:
    Far Coast, a Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO)

  • Manufacturer:
    University of British Columbia Centre for Advanced Wood Processing

  • Team of Industrial Designers:
    Tina Kao, Sheila Tse, Nick Santillan, and Luke Opacic (Wood Engineer)

  • Products:
    Outdoor lounge chair, coffee table, and stand-up community table

  • Software Tools: Adobe Illustrator, AutoCAD LT, and Softimage

  • Date: September 2009 - December 2009

  • News: News Wire, Far Coast Release News, Vancouver Sun News

  • Download: Far Coast Brand Guideline


Far Coast is thrilled to do its part to reduce the overall environmental footprint of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games with our Blue Pine Furniture Partnership. Chris Terrio, Managing Director of Brewed Beverages, Coca-Cola


If there is a putative B.C. collectible with the lineage that columnist Travis champions, the outdoor tables and chairs in the Winter Games athletes villages are it. Debbie Travis, Columnist of Vancouver Sun Newspaper (Friday, February 2, 2010)


The Far Coast beverage company comments, the 'Blue Pine' furniture partnership will leave a legacy of sustainability, innovation, design, creativity and collaboration, while supporting communities devastated by the pine beetle. Debbie Travis, Columnist of Vancouver Sun Newspaper (Friday, February 2, 2010)


The Challenge

Products Design Requirements Download Instructions
All furniture pieces
  • The physical design aspect is required to be economically “manufacturable” primarily by UBC’s woodworking facilities.
  • The lower the cost the bigger the option for higher volume production.
  • The furniture must be suitable for indoor and outdoor use, knock-down, and can be ship in compact state where it is easy to disassemble for reshipping.
  • The final product must be easy to assemble by untrained workers.
    Outdoor lounge chair Create a “new concept” that is low, comfortable, and suitable for relaxing while enjoying a hot beverage. Chair assembly
    Outdoor low table Paired with the Far Coast chair, it is used for a safe place to set down a hot beverage as the chair does not include that function.
    Outdoor stand-up community table
    • Approximately 8’ long, intended for people to be able to rest at with their hot beverage.
    • It should be suitably stable enough for leaning against.
    • The intention of the large size is to promote socialization between different guests sharing the table.
    • It is also required to support a large size patio umbrella.
    Stand-up table assembly

    The Design Process

    Rapid prototyping and user testing.

    I made sketches, small scale foam models, and full scale wooden prototypes. Models were refined to get the best proportions needed. An adjustable seat jig was created to get the perfect ergonomic angles and measurements. Many options were tested to remove any aesthetic compromise over assembly and strength.

    According to the provincial government of British Columbia, the mountain pine beetle has been eating its way through BC’s forests for years; leaving millions of dead and mainly lodgepole pine trees. My team designed the furniture collection using the B.C. mountain pine beetle material to support West Coast communities devastated by the pine beetle as the result of global warming.

    The brand of the 2010 Winter Olympic connection speaks to social nature of coffee as a gatherer around the cup.

    Our design captures the brand essence; colour and style. Our aim is to help build the Far Coast and 2010 Winter Olympic brand and to help create the ambiance and feel of Far Coast “warming zone”. Our goal is to inspire and facilitate social interaction and cultural connections and maintain a design style across all furniture elements.

    The Outcome

    Inspired by the Far Coast Logo, the chair’s unique asymmetrical back support pattern invites playfulness that allows for a variety of arrangements.

    The asymmetrical design of the chair allows two variations to be manufactured with minimal added costs, while adding various configurations to create more unique settings for display.

    We used only dimension lumber to stay within the manufacture budget and to be assembled through ready-to-assemble (RTA) hardware. The chairs and tables are flat-packed assembled for ease of production and transportation.

    Our furniture was used in major Far Coast venues and installations in the Athletes' Villages, Olympic stadiums, and throughout Whistler and the Lower Mainland.

    Approximately 100 Olympic outdoor lounge chairs, 70 community stand-up tables and 30 coffee tables were manufactured at University of British Columbia Centre for Advanced Wood Processing.