I’ve been reading Make Space lately and this book has some great ideas on how to layout a design lab. I have especially enjoyed the authors ideas on what type of furniture to put in the various spaces. Modified Z-racks, cocktail height prototyping tables and flip-top storage/brainstorming tables have all be inspiring. I’ve actually taken on redesigning our lab and have modified some of our spaces to be more modular as well. Currently I am repurposing some old A/V carts using Brogen’s laser cut box plans for storage. I think next year I’ll have the student’s actually cut out their own boxes so that they have one for storage of their projects as the semester progresses. I actually went down to IKEA and since my head was in the “redesign my lab” space it was fun to think about how I could “hack” some of the IKEA furniture to be used in the design lab. It’s just fun to walk around the store, see something like a stainless steel dish rack and think, “I bet I could store some Chromebooks in there.” I may have to design a class around the idea of redesigning the lab spaces using IKEA peices as the catalyst to get ideas flowing.
The Make Space book also made me excited for using more CNC in our lab. The amount of furniture that you can create on your own with a CNC is amazing. I do wish that the CNC furniture that was referenced in the Make Space book could be downloaded for use on my own CNC machine. I may have to check into that to see if someone would be able to get me some of the files.
Overall, the Make Space book is an amazing resource. If you get a chance, read it. Even if you don’t need to redesign your lab it would be a great read to help challenge your thinking on why and how to use your design, fab, or maker spaces effectively.