穆尔斯，指导美国ESSAY 皇家橡树的家具业主，都是所谓的“大规模定制”的理念，技术和现有的电脑辅助制造基础设施能够共同创造相对较少的钱定制设计理念的追随者。随着制造业职位消失在密歇根州,每年国家损失146700美元,而大规模定制是在2002年和2007年制造业创造了就业机会，根据劳动和经济增长计划 ，大规模定制不仅只是#p#分页标题#e#一个难以实现的哲学命题了。Custom for the massesNancy Kaffer. Crain’s Detroit Business. Detroit: Jun 2, 2008. Vol. 24, Iss. 22; p. M23
Abstract (Summary)The Moores, owners of Royal Oak’s Context Furniture, are adherents of a concept called "mass customization," the idea that technology and existing computer-aided manufacturing infrastructure can come together to create custom designs for relatively little money. With manufacturing jobs disappearing yearly in Michigan – the state lost 146,700 manufacturing jobs between 2002 and 2007, according to the Department of Labor and Economic Growth – mass customization isn’t just an elusive philosophical ideal.
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Copyright Crain Communications, Incorporated Jun 2, 2008
The drape chair has smooth lines, a cap of steel folded atop a clean frame. The chair which can be lengthened to bench-width – is one of five pieces that are part of Kerry and Bryce Moore’s Design Democracy ’08 collection, selected from dozens of designs entered in the De-sign Democracy contest, fabricated in local shops and displayed last month at the New York International Contemporary Furniture Fair.
The Moores, owners of Royal Oak’s Context Furniture, are adherents of a concept called "mass customization," the idea that technology and existing computer-aided manufacturing infrastructure can come together to create custom designs for relatively little money.
Think of it as the anti-Ikea. Rather than using manufacturing facilities to produce masses of identical goods made cheaply through commodities of scale, computerized manufacturing equipment can be programmed and reprogrammed to produce high volumes of custom goods at a similarly low cost.
"Most furniture is made in big factories with an assumed demand," Kerry Moore said. "This is about making what people want, making it valuable, changing the way people interact with the products they use."
It’s a familiar concept to shoppers who are looking for, say, a new personal computer – in that industry, customizing programs and features is standard. But the idea that you can customize furniture, and for relatively little money, remains unfamiliar to most consumers.
Enter Design Democracy. "We’re in the process of demonstrating how flexible mass customization can be," Bryce Moore said. "We can take something from a more abstract level and make it real."
At the furniture fair, the Design Democracy pieces were well-received, Kerry Moore said, with press in design blogs. Mass customization also piqued the interest of organizations and schools.
One item, a Rapid Prototype lamp produced using laser sintering, was examined so often it was broken.
With manufacturing jobs disappearing yearly in Michigan – the state lost 146,700 manufacturing jobs between 2002 and 2007, according to the Department of Labor and Economic Growth – mass customization isn’t just an elusive philosophical ideal.#p#分页标题#e#
Just ask Al Carsten, shop supervisor at Waterford Township’s Leading Edge, one of many local manufacturers working on Design Democracy pieces. Most of Leading Edge’s work is on the industrial side of things, but a job’s a job.
"It doesn’t matter if we’re doing a higher quantity or one piece," he said. "We’re making money. Any job, especially in today’s economy, is welcome."
Setup time for a Moore custom project is minimal, Carsten said – they e-mail him a file, he loads it into the machine, and work begins.
Despite the do-it-yourself feel of mass customization, it’s a cooperative effort, Kerry Moore said. Most designs that aren’t professionally created need a once-over from a pro to smooth out the edges, refine proportions or add elements that increase the piece’s functionality or manufacturability, much as Kerry and Bryce Moore tweaked the Design Democracy pieces. Even a person without experience can make a design, and a professional can make it functional.
Both DuPont Chemicals and AIN Plastics. a subsidiary of Thyssen-Krupp Materials N.A., have donated materials to the Design Democracy efforts. Both Moores come from artistic backgrounds and a shared love for design. They’re the kind of couple who might be overheard arguing the merits of Frank Lloyd Wright versus Marcel Breuer.
It was during just such a conversation, Kerry Moore said, that the couple decided to start designing their own furniture. Aided by a counselor from the Small Business Administration’s Service Corps of Retired Executives program, which pairs retired executives with entrepreneurs, the couple’s first effort was Context Furniture’s Narrative Collection. Simple, elegant pieces are made of layers of plywood, coated with wood veneer. It’s an effort, Kerry Moore said, to force the eye to deconstruct the piece.
Each piece comes with a specifications sheet, allowing customers to change proportions. Despite that, Kerry Moore said, people weren’t grasping the custom options and were still ordering pieces as presented.
A later collection offered customers component choices to form chairs or tables. "We thought, ‘If we can’t get them to customize, maybe we can get them to configure,’ " she said.
Later years saw the William and Mary Collection, which plays on the viewer’s perception of the traditional turned leg by presenting it in silhouette.
For mass customization to become popular, Kerry Moore said, people first need to know it’s an option. Second, it needs a broad online database of possible designs, and 指导美国ESSAY third, it needs an aggregator, like Context Furniture, to bring designer and consumer together.
Context Furniture is making a profit. Kerry Moore said the business earned $217,000 in revenue last year. Context’s lines appear in showrooms nationally, Kerry Moore said, with most sales going to businesses or architects. The furniture fair exposure could help push mass customization closer to mainstream awareness, Kerry Moore said.#p#分页标题#e#
Each drape chair, Bryce Moore said, should retail for less than $300 – probably more than the cost at a big-box retailer, but less than the cost for other custom-designed furniture – and he’s hoping to cut the price further.
"We could probably make 400 chairs in a day," he said. "And we can still manufacture 400 different chairs in one day."