Get in touchResourcesFAQsNews + InsightConfiguratorCCS PortalLock technologySustainabilityLogin

An Interview with Chris Fowler - The Designer Behind Hideaway Swing Desk

Mar 29, 2022|

We recently launched the latest addition to our beautiful Belong collection - Hideaway Swing Desk. In this interview, we spoke to the designer behind the project, Chris Fowler, and discussed his inspiration behind the creation of the product.

Chris, can you tell us a little bit more about Hideaway Swing Desk and how the idea for the product was born?

Like millions of other people, the first lockdown forced me to work from home at a moment’s notice. At first, I set myself up at our kitchen table, then as it became apparent the pandemic wasn’t going to pass any time soon, I took up a more permanent position in our living room. With a table, monitor and proper task chair I was more comfortable for sure, but I quickly got fed up of the room looking a mess in the evenings and weekends.

I wanted to design a twin function piece of furniture, a spacious desk with everything to hand throughout the day, but also a quick to close away sideboard, with no work clutter on show at the end the day.

So, whilst the design originated from my personal circumstance, it was clear that there was a broader market for Hideaway Swing Desk.

Were there any specific considerations when bringing the product from sketch to life?

We produced a number of prototypes to refine the ergonomics for both desk and sideboard use – striking the right balance between uses was the main consideration.

Refining the ideal pivot location and determining the best method of holding the desktop open at 90 degrees were also covered in the development stage.

I wanted to keep the appearance as neat as practical – there are no door handles, locks or hinges visible when the unit is closed away.

Were there any environmental or sustainability considerations with regards to the materials used and its production?

Both the melamine faced chipboard and steel panel components used within the Hideaway Swing Desk assembly have >80% of recycled material content.

The entire product is made in our own factory, with no part of the process reliant on sub-contractors. This reduces the manufacturing carbon footprint to a minimum.

At the end of life, the product may be broken down and split between timber, steel, alloy (fixings) and electrical component parts, and recycled.

Can you tell us what are Hideaway Swing Desk’s specific features and benefits?

Within a compact piece of furniture, I’m pleased that we were able to provide a generous worksurface, provision for power and USB charging, cable management, areas for small personal effects as well as bulkier items such as a printer, lamp and filing.

We wanted to offer a quality product with soft to the touch surfaces, further elevating the user experience. I think we have delivered a product that looks attractive and is functional in both its desk and sideboard modes.

How was the process and were there any unexpected difficulties you encountered?

Getting Hideaway Swing Desk to easily swing out over a variety of floor surfaces ranging from wooden floorboards to a heavy pile carpet was tricky. We tried all manner of levellers, glides, and castors before settling on the softly radiused end panel solution.

Can you tell us a little more about what’s next for Bisley in terms of the type of products you’re currently working on?

Our product development roadmap is at the very heart of our strategy, as are various CSR and sustainability initiatives that, we believe, are also hugely important to our customers. We are about to launch a number of new services which showcase our design flexibility and manufacturing capabilities, and we’re also planning on introducing more products in the coming months, both for the home and office.

Please choose your region