Francesca Pezze

Class of 2011

Designer at Poppin



Francesca Pezze is a junior product designer at Poppin, a lifestyle office supply company based in New York City, and has been working happy since the fall of 2011. She earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts in industrial design and also completed her associate's degree in graphic design while studying at the Rochester Institute of Technology. During her four year journey at RIT, she also had the opportunity to study abroad at Hochschule Anhalt in Dessau, Germany which is within walking distance to the Bauhaus. Francesca graduated in 2011 with high honors and earned honorable mention in Metaproject01’s Wilsonart furniture challenge. Her stool, The Nodule, from the Wilsonart Challenge was exhibited at the 2011 International Contemporary Furniture Fair held in New York City. The final prototype of The Nodule has since been archived in RIT’s permanent Cary Collection. Currently she is an aspiring junior product designer, discovering and developing her conceptual and creative abilities in the prominent mecca of the design world, New York City. She meshes nicely alongside the positive energy that the Poppin office environment permeates. With Poppin’s motto of ‘workhappy.everyone.everywhere.everyday’ she strives to work happy while shaking up the stagnant office supply industry one stapler at a time. Her current endeavors are just a short distance from her hometown of Albany, New York, where her parents and three older sisters reside.


The Nodule, bathroom stool

The goal of the challenge was to design a seating device that enhances a cultural context while embracing Wilsonart's laminate. Stipulations for he project were that the chair had to hold 400lbs, you could only use red, black or white laminate and Wilsonart's red logo chip must be incorporated into the chair

Naming my stool ‘the Nodule’ goes back to my original inspiration and sketch of what highly resembled a tree stump with branches coming off it. Meaning a small knobbly rock or an outgrowth formed on roots, the word nodule seemed appropriate. Wilsonart’s laminate was perfect for this bathroom stool because of it’s durability and easy to sanitize surface. Bathrooms are a place where soft organic forms thrive, my goal was to push the limits of laminate in order to conform it to the cone shapes repeated throughout the stool. The nodule enhances the processes of personal grooming that are too often disregarded.




About the the Nodule

The overwhelming task of applying laminate to curved surfaces, something laminate doesn't take well to. To be specific for the interior red application on the smaller cones I remember heating (baking more or less) the laminate in the oven I had in my apartment. More concerned about whether or not is was going to hold when I was done and less about the fumes it was emitting into my common space. The original idea was to use a kiln but because of the time constraints and the fact that the pieces were pretty small it seemed like the best idea at the time which in turn worked out perfectly. Looking back though maybe not the safest approaches. I think I have a picture that I could add to this memory, let me know if you want it.