The Indianapolis Public Library—in particular the central location in downtown Indianapolis—had been working with ExpoDesign for years on various projects, including banners and “Call-a-Story” theming.

The Challenge

The central downtown location of the Indianapolis Public Library purchased chairs in a style that they loved. Unfortunately, the chairs were not durable enough to handle the daily wear-and-tear; they were breaking down quickly. IMPCL needed replacement chairs that achieved the same style but that were much more durable and easily cleaned. The chairs in question had a specialty globular design that offer the sitter a comfortable, private nook in which to enjoy their reading experience. ExpoDesign needed to research and develop a material to achieve the specific, spherical shape with a durable finish.

The Solution

ExpoDesign came up with a solution for the material: we used a high-density, polystyrene foam coated in a structural polyurethane hardcoat, sanded smooth and then recoated with a stipple finish. The stipple finish provided a texture that would prevent sitters from scratching through to the foam. Finally, the chairs underwent an automotive finishing system to create a highly durable barrier around the hardcoat.

We recreated the design of the purchased chairs using 3D modeling technology, making only slight changes to create a more substantial and steady base.To ensure that these chairs were all perfectly the same, we outsourced the foam forming to a company offering CNC fabrication services. Once we received the foam chairs, they were sanded and assembled. We then inserted a heavy gauge steel plate into the base for structure and weight. Finally, we applied our coating and finishing processes to achieve the desired texture, finish and durability.

The end result was modern, glossy-white, cozy seating that provided the desired aesthetic and experience but could take a beating. IMPCL was very satisfied with the chairs and continues to work with ExpoDesign today.

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