Tim Wilson is one of the old guard here at Flexiform, man and boy Tim has been in the Furniture design industry for over 30 years. A fully qualified furniture designer, Tim is our very own award winning designer! Tim has been awarded BED award for his work on the innovative Chess desking range. Tim’s working life at Flexiform began way back in 1994 in an era of floppy disks, miles of cabling and huge monitors.
What is your greatest achievement during your time at Flexiform?
“Chess desking is definitely the project I am most proud of. Chess was a full systems range, based around a 4 way workstation design. A fully wire managed, sliding top desking system with an integral screening system. Seems pretty standard these days, but back then this was really cutting edge stuff. Yes, commercially it was a huge success, I remember seeing truck after truck of Chess leaving the factory for some big name customers. As always with this type of project, it’s not just a case of making a product that looks nice, it needs to be designed for manufacture – there’s no point designing something we can’t actually make”.
“That has always been the challenge throughout my professional career, creating exciting designs that actually have some practical uses and features and is economically feasible.”
Chess was a very successful (commercially) range and a huge project, are there other products you enjoyed working on?
The Metro pedestal range was also a great product to design. A good example of how a designer must think beyond fancy shapes and think along practical lines. A pedestal is nothing new or exciting, but back in 2006 Flexiform were still heavily into wooden carcasses on their pedestals. We are essentially a metal work company, so the challenge was to produce a fully in house manufactured metal pedestal.
It was a great project to lead, the range was designed on our old Radan CAD system. The Metro range fulfilled the brief exactly, we designed a pedestal made from light gauge steel, made in house at a sensible cost. I introduced new high quality runners to the range and the use of an anti tilt mechanism, Metro was a huge leap forward for Flexiform. We still sell thousands of Metro peds every year.
So, what is on your drawing board today?
These days I’m back to my roots, desking. Pico desking is the big seller for Flexiform, a truly multi-functional bench system. It’s been around for a few years now, a really high quality product and a commercial winner for the company. No matter how well a product sells, I always feel we can improve so I am constantly tweaking and improving the range, all our ranges actually. We are developing a new range of meeting tables “Additions 2” this is a set of collaborative and meeting tables, designed for ad-hoc workers, we have some really interesting projects on the go”
Finally I have a table full of (specials) bespoke desks. No matter how big our ranges of furniture, there always seems to be a customer who needs one more size. But that’s what we do, if a customer wants it, we will do our best to help them.
And the future for Tim Wilson?
“Lots in the pipeline! I have a notebook full of ideas. I am still developing the Jot-Up range, our new sit stand range. Absolutely thrilled with this design! It’s not our 1st attempt at this, but definitely our best system yet. Programmable electronic adjustment, that can count calories burnt whilst working, we have just had our first big installation of 200 of these units and just completed our photoshoot and brochures, it all looks fantastic.”
“Laser cutting is the next area to really get to grips with, we have used it extensively on our Ferro range, the results are impressive, I have several projects in mind I can exploit this technique on”.