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K-State Today

October 21, 2016

Interior architecture & product design graduate wins in national furniture design competition

Submitted by Thom Jackson

Zachary Manual, a 2016 graduate from the College of Architecture, Planning & Design's interior architecture & product design program at K-State, was selected as the winner of the seating division at the 2016 Design Emphasis Student Furniture Design Competition. Manual submitted his work in his last semester prior to graduating.

The Design Emphasis award is recognized as one of the most prestigious awards for up-and-coming furniture designers in the industry. Design Emphasis invites students from the U.S. to participate in a furniture design competition offering more than $10,000 in prizes.

The competition recognizes outstanding marketable designs in seating — commercial, office or hospitality — case goods, accent furniture and design creativity. Entrants must be enrolled in an accredited furniture design or wood products course and have designed the piece within the last four semesters. 

Design Emphasis is part of the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta, Georgia, every two years. The fair is an international trade show for wood and related materials processing, machinery and supplies, bringing together a wide array of manufacturers and suppliers for the furniture, flooring and related products industry.

A jury selected the final pieces featured in a special exhibit at the 2016 fair as outstanding examples of the practical applications of an art form. A panel of judges from manufacturing and design industries and academia then judged the pieces. Winners were announced and presented with their cash prizes and the distinct Design Emphasis trophy at a ceremony before the fair.

After the ceremony, students, judges, press and guests visited the Design Emphasis booth to view the projects and network.