Looking for open source furniture


Dear lazyweb. As I am a complete troglodyte in matters of taste and style—something I am obviously trying to mask by using fancy words for “caveman”—and I need to make myself a small cabinet to keep magazines in and drinks on, I find myself looking for “open source” furniture. And finding none. Indeed, the closest I am getting so far are the designs of De Stijl giant Gerrit Rietveld, who apparently created some designs for cheap furniture made out crates during The Crisis of the 1930s.

The Rietveld-Schröderhuis website mentions a brochure made by Rietveld for the Commission Concerning Household Education and Family Leadership called Meubels om zelf te maken (Furniture You Can Make Yourself), created around 1943, 1944, but probably never published. Oddly enough, Paul Ket has low-res scans of this brochure on his website, and Brian C. Keith has even created detailed plans for some of Rietveld’s furniture (some of Rietveld’s designs are public domain in the US, I don’t know about the legality of the rest). If you’re too lazy, Rietveld’s grandchildren sell some of the designs as construction kits.

But to get back to my question: do any of you know open source furniture that I could use?


  1. Eric says:

    Don’t all major dutch DIY stores (Gamma and the likes) have stuff like that hidden in their web-o-sphere? Dunno however if (a) the designs are to your liking and/or DIY skills and (b) their license is anything close to open source…

  2. Branko Collin says:

    They do, as do DIY books and magazines. I just hadn’t realised that basically every DIY project is “open source.”

    In my experience though these projects tend to focus more on their value as a tutorial than on the beauty of the end product. Also, I want something catalogued and searchable.

  3. Carola says:

    Niet gecatalogiseerd, maar wel heel mooi: kartonnen meubels om zelf te maken. Maar waar o waar… Gevonden: http://www.foldschool.com/. Zie nu dat het wel voor kinderen is. Nou ja, misschien heb je wel kleine billen.

  4. These look great, but I am really trying to move away from my cardboard furniture. (At the moment I am using a cardboard box as a coffee table. Very Bohemian, I am sure.)

  5. tangerinepiggy says:

    They have a bunch of neat Ideas to get you going and you could always try searching
    Most everything up the is creative commons or public domain. Hope you find what you are looking for.

  6. Saw this discussion as I am searching for the same. So far what I have found is: http://www.ronen-kadushin.com/Open_Design.asp. Really nice looking stuff.

  7. Thanks Kelly, amazing stuff. Keep ’em coming, everybody!

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