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Exploring the Future of Interior Design at TIMB3R DIP 3.0

May 5, 2024 | Campus News

An annual programme designed to assist the Malaysian timber and furniture industry grow, TIMB3R Design Incubator Programme (DIP) 3.0 recently held an informative sharing at The One Academy for students in the Interior Architecture & Design programme. The session highlighted the program's unique approach of pairing local designers with timber manufacturers. This collaboration not only raises awareness about the beauty and potential of Malaysian timber, but also emphasizes the crucial role interior designers play in maximizing the value of this sustainable material.

This year's theme, ‘Innovation Meets Sustainability,’ promises to push the boundaries of eco-friendly design and craftsmanship within the timber and furniture industry. To inspire and educate students, five renowned local interior designers each shared their unique furniture collection for TIMB3R DIP 3.0, along with the creative process behind each piece.

The event kicked off with Tennyson Chia of Sachi Interior Design showcasing his collection, titled ‘T Minus,’ a symbolic reference to both the past and the future. Drawing inspiration from his grandmother's life story, the furniture design of chairs, coffee table and storage box, combined Malay and Chinese elements, traditional craftsmanship, and modern aesthetics. Each furniture piece also incorporated woven rattan with a wooden frame resembling her love for sewing.

“As a designer I always focus on aesthetics only at the very end because experience and storytelling are the most important part of design”, said Chia.

Sarah Rahman wowed students with her play on the theme by creating a unique, durable furniture set. The Award-winning graduate from the Royal College of Art in London shared her collection ‘Nilam Puri’ which was assembled in a way that could last for generations. Inspired by the traditional interlocking timber construction technique of South East Asia’s oldest mosque, Masjid Kampung Tua in Nilam Puri, the collection comprises modular sofa chairs, side tables, and coffee tables. The interlocking technique was a clever way to ensure the longevity of the furniture pieces by reducing the wear-and-tear of additional tools needed to hold each piece in place.

Design Director of A Moxie Associates Sdn Bhd, Cayenne Lim's 'Hey Hatch' redefined baby furniture. Inspired by hatching eggs, it hides a crib within a multi-functional piece. The table top flips to reveal a mirror and storage, transforming into a dressing table or living room set with armchairs and a coffee table. It was an impressive way of giving more than one purpose to a baby crib which once its outgrown, eventually gets thrown away.

“It takes an entire team, countless brainstorming sessions as well as trial and error throughout the design process to execute this piece”, said Lim as she emphasised on the importance of teamwork.

Architects like Dexter Koh and Eric Wong however, created innovative designs that prioritize both aesthetics and functionality. Eric Wong, of Hoe Design Architect, focused on inclusivity with the ‘Butterfly’ dining set. Inspired by butterfly wings, the strategically angled table legs provided ample legroom for people with disabilities and the elderly. Dexter Koh, founder of DEKODA, champions sustainability with his "COLOBOX" design. This eco-friendly, built-in storage system is removable, allowing for easy reconfiguration or removal without waste.

This collaboration between The One Academy and TIMB3R DIP 3.0, exposes students to industry experts, allowing them to learn from experienced designers and stay updated on latest trends. By the end of the session, they discovered the transformative power of interior design, where both spaces and furniture come alive. Witnessing the meticulous process of crafting masterpieces from raw materials widened their creative and strategic thinking skills.

The One Academy is committed to providing the best art education programmes and continues to nurture its students passionately through its “Masters Train Masters” coaching philosophy, which has been practised for over 33 years, by providing diploma and degree courses in Advertising & Graphic Design, Digital Animation, Digital Media Design, Film Visual Effects, Interior Architecture & Design, Illustration, Fine Arts, Paris Fashion Design & Pattern Making, Computer Science & Game Design. For more information, visit or call 03-7875 5510 or e-mail your enquiries to [email protected].

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