Great Chair Challenge Group Shot

The Great Chair Challenge

Chair Challenge Winners
Chair Challenge Winners
Chair Challenge Winners
Chair Challenge Winners

NOVA’s Interior Design (IDS) Club officially launched its first annual The Great Chair Challenge with the distribution of 20 chairs on October 4, 2012, at the Loudoun Campus. The creator of this challenge was the club’s current president-elect, Katja Richards. She also collected all 20 chairs and presented the idea to the club’s board members. Once the event was approved, Professor Ann Nichols (faculty advisor), Dawn Skoog (club president) and Richards decided to test the challenge with a few chairs that would be used as examples to entice student participation during the first meeting of the 2012 fall semester.

The challenge was introduced to the club members on September 6 and by the end of the one-hour meeting 24 individuals had registered for 20 chairs. The chairs were brought to the Loudoun Campus and distributed by lottery in October. With a budget of only $50.00 and use of their own materials, as well as fabric, paint and miscellaneous items donated by sponsors, the participants had three months to complete this challenge.

On January 5, The Great Chair Challenge took place at the Lorton Workhouse Arts Center where the chairs were placed on display.

Great Chair Challenge Group Shot
NOVA Interior Design Club Board Members: (from left to right) Professor Ann Nichols, Paige Edwards, Dawn Skoog, Katja Richards, Lucrecia Reyes and Sandy Manley. Not pictured: Heather Bates (club membership).

The event consisted of the exhibition of the chairs, an awards reception and a silent auction. The silent auction manned by Sandy Manley (treasurer) was a great success bringing in funds for future Interior Design Club activities. The exhibition of the chairs included an inspiration statement by the student along with a “before” photograph. Lucrecia Reyes (communication/publicity chair) collected “before, during and after” photographs from the participants and put together a video that played throughout the reception. The video is available for viewing at the following link:

The food and beverages were provided by the board members and beautifully displayed by Paige Edwards (club secretary).

The competition was judged by Nancy Colbert, NCIDQ, ASID, CID (Design Partners, LLC), Marni Maree (artist), and Michael Polovina, IIDA (architect and design manager) who were gracious enough to support this event.

The “Best in Design” award was presented to Sheila Chester for her “Musical Chair.” Two honorable mentions went to Rhonda Denardo for her “Bipartisan Chair” and Nichols for her “Green Chair.”

At the end of the competition, 21 chairs were saved from the landfill and found new homes instead. Excess fabric, foam, batting, paint and miscellaneous materials donated by sponsors were recycled in the process. This event challenged students to think about how their decisions affect the environment. The chairs remained on display at the Maguire Gallery of the Workhouse Arts Center until January 20.

This year’s event was sponsored by the Workhouse Arts Center, Pitkin’s Ace Hardware, David Edward Furniture, Sherwin Williams and Staged for Success by Toni.

This event will hopefully inspire others to make a conscious effort to minimize their impact on the environment by showing some possibilities of what can be accomplished with minimal resources.

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