Creating a sofa with a circular lifecycle


Most sofas are made using fixings that are difficult to reverse without damaging the parts. Different types of materials are combined using adhesives and when a component breaks, it often makes the whole sofa unusable. While some more sustainable options do exist, they are financially out of reach to the average person.


The final design is an affordable modular sofa which can be easily assembled by the user to create personalised seating combinations. The accompanying digital interface supports users through the repair, care and replacement of each component. ‘Sofa’ reduces furniture waste and creates a living environment that adapts to the user’s individual needs and likes, as they change through time.


Research showed that sofas often end up in landfill because repairing and replacing broken parts is a challenging and complicated process. Additionally, changing user living situations and preferences also mean that sofas get discarded and replaced.

Research the problem:

  • Lack of adaptability to changing user needs and preferences – the user obliged to adapt to the furniture and not the latter to their needs (furniture fixed size vs available space)
  • Unsustainable or toxic materials used for furniture today
  • Limited end of life options – unrepairable furniture
  • Return of used products or throwing them away and replacing them today is easier than repairing or refreshing and renewing them
  • Fixed and irreversible connections of furniture (screws, glue, materials) often hinder the capacity to repair or amend or upcycle/recycle

Design the product:

  • Flatpacked and foldable – easy and environmental friendly transportation – storage
  • Repairable
  • Adaptable – customised to the end user’s changings taste and needs
  • An approach than can be expanded to a range of products and industries
  • Easy repair and renewal of everyday products by the end user