The Wool Challenge: Method's interactive wallpaper, Woolpaper

At Idealog, we regularly celebrate our design community's brilliance. Admittedly, we also get a twisted sort of pleasure out of making our annual design challenge harder and harder each year – but that’s because we want to ensure the community continues to think outside the box. Thanks to our friends at Icebreaker, we sent out a box of very raw wool fibre to some talented humans in a range of design disciplines and tasked them with recreating an everyday object using wool. Here’s what digital agency Method came up with – an interactive wallpaper, Woolpaper.

"The idea for the wool challenge that everyone was drawn to was one where we could create woollen wall installations with embedded technology that enabled people to visualise scenes and stories. Storytelling through creative tech is key in what we do at Method and M Theory, so this felt like a natural winner.

The next challenge was, how on earth do we take raw wool and make it into the final product?

A few online videos later, we got our hands dirty by creating felt out of the wool. It was not quite as hard as we’d initially thought but still a little time consuming – we did have to cover a whole wall after all. We thought we did a pretty good job and our Woolpaper is now on display in our office for all to enjoy.

In keeping with the theme, we decided to use sewing style buttons as our switches rather than going high tech. They’re nicer to touch and created a deconstructed sweater look on the wall. We linked each button to a different scene run through our projector and with a bit of tech magic…voilà – we’d created a sustainable, soundproof, and natural wall covering with changeable digital art.

Woolpaper can bring any room to life and change your surroundings at the touch of a button. Great for your home or the office, Woolpaper. is an interior designer’s dream. Check out the full journey at www.woolpaper.co.nz and www.blog.woolpaper.co.nz."

Designers and contributors: Nick Peek, Kees Bakker, Caitlin Palmer, Andrew Welsh and Tanya Smith.

Idealog has been covering the most interesting people, businesses and issues from the fields of innovation, design, technology and urban development for over 12 years. And we're asking for your support so we can keep telling those stories, inspire more entrepreneurs to start their own businesses and keep pushing New Zealand forward. Give over $5 a month and you will not only be supporting New Zealand innovation, but you’ll also receive a print subscription and a copy of the new book by David Downs and Dr. Michelle Dickinson, No. 8 Recharged (while stocks last).