In its quest for ‘bigger and better’ technology, mankind is facing a mountain of expanded foam pieces and polystyrene packing material used to protect items during handling. Tom Ballhatchet, a recent graduate from the Central St Martins’ MA in Industrial Design, has come up with a simple and utterly plausible solution. Rather than throw away the packaging and leave nature (and a few hundred years) to deal with it, Ballhatchet’s concept allows the user to slide foam casing apart after delivery and reassemble the parts to form a neat self-contained entertainment stand with built in cable management system.

With a patent imminent, Ballhatchet’s design is already generating a lot of interest – and we hope to see this idea applied to more packaging design in the future.

+ Tom Ballhatchet Eco TV Stand


or your inhabitat account below


  1. Bux February 26, 2008 at 8:26 pm

    This a wonderful idea! I truly love the concept of giving packaging a second/further use. This piece works for the product within – ideal!

    As the design is, I feel its aesthetically pleasing and suited to its environment within the home. Being that lovely graphite Grey color its Simple and Effective – as it adds value, meaning the consumer may be more inclined to use it compared to if it were the traditional white colored stuff.

    Regarding the comments made above such as ‘adding extra strength’ – you have to be careful here. For example, a more dense material – increasing structural integrity will surely give the user peace of mind in that it will support the TV. But as we know, doing so would add more energy to the production process, more raw material, more expense to the package – thus product itself. It will also take longer to degrade/be broken down once it sadly comes to the end of its life cycle. The same goes for additional/mixed materials such as ‘veneer’ or ‘interior padding’. This will also make this item harder to sort when it comes to re-cycling. Adding a lot of cost to packaging isn’t wise for a couple of reasons.
    1. The manufacturer will be less likely to choose this new idea over the cheaper version already used.
    2. If the consumer of the product chooses not to use the packaging as its designed to be used (TV Stand), and they throw it out, then it will be a more expensive and harder to recycle piece of material.

    Sadly, some people simply wont chose to use packaging for a functional TV stand or such like, for the mere fact it is just that…packaging! This is a stigma that needs to be lifted! This project positively helps to do just that. I think this is a big step in the right direction and designers should produce more ideas like this one, But actually get them out on the markets! This is turn will convince consumers that its a great idea to re-use packaging in such ways. I’ve been a advocate of this idea for years and believe adding a further use to packaging prolongs it being thrown away, which is good for the planet! Ideas like this spark further ones and will hopefully catch on as designers and manufacturers jump on the bandwagon.

    Who’s Grand Parents still collect and reuse biscuit tins and other types of well made (if not slightly overly-well made) pieces of packaging ?? What happened to this perfectly feasible solution?!…Modern day attitudes make us believe its somehow… a bit gypsy maybe…
    Its wrong! lets help change this belief, through cleverly designed packaging.


  2. February 11, 2008 at 8:37 am

    YEAH! Good Design and a very cool Idea…

  3. Packaging Furniture | C... December 4, 2007 at 7:16 pm

    […] via […]

  4. Jaki jest najlepszy tel... December 1, 2007 at 1:50 pm

    […] projekty odpowiada Tom Ballhatchet, a znaleźliśmy je na Inhabitat. Ciekawe czy pomysł rozpowszechni się wśród producentów płaskich […]

  5. &ra... October 1, 2007 at 3:11 pm

    […] ha sorprendido gratamente un post de Inhabitat que muestra un novedoso packaging transformado en mueble para TV. EL responsable, el diseñador […]

  6. Evan October 1, 2007 at 11:22 am

    I say wrapping it in some bamboo veneer, using a soy foam and adding some iPod speakers for universal appeal could make it a really hot product. Good design!

  7. Richie September 28, 2007 at 1:07 pm

    Yeah… if this could be designed so that it didn’t ‘chip apart’ over time and the middle didn’t sag from the weight… this is great. Putting some 2″ hard rubber casters, screwed into a plywood board underneath this foam assemblage would make it mobile as well. Lifting it up a bit on wheels would probably work nicely

    Another option is to have a 2 stage packaging system. A molded polypropylenes furniture component exterior.. with a padded interior of some eco-stuff ?.

  8. Dirtytup.Com » EC... September 28, 2007 at 12:56 pm

    […] wrote an interesting post today on ECO TV PACKAGING TURNS INTO DIY FURNITUREHere’s a quick […]

  9. EvaInNL September 28, 2007 at 8:22 am

    LOL, I thought I was being pretty creative by using that stuff as storage for shoes! I’ve got quite a collection of foam and other packaging materials but haven’t found the time or inspiration to do more with it. Tom’s really inspired me to get started…

  10. Design geniale « ... September 28, 2007 at 3:59 am

    […] Venerdì 28 Settembre 2007, 9:57 am Archiviato in: bezerker, design, eco L’avevo già visto ma non ricordo di averlo mai postato: questo concetto di design 360 che vi studia non solo il […]

  11. Rex September 27, 2007 at 7:33 pm

    The material in itself probably won’t be foam but made of a harder sustainable substance.
    I really love the 2-for-1 deal on this, but customers will most likely have furniture to put their new T.V. or product on… or even place it on the wall.
    So it seems kind of redundant.. but he is going to have to find the market for this type of product.. such as new home owners or college students..

  12. francis September 27, 2007 at 4:57 pm

    That’s funny, I used to use the white Styrofoam packing material as wall hung shelves because of their interesting shapes and lightness. My question is, in time won’t that large hole (empty expanse) in the front of this new “TV stand” collapse under the weight of the tv with the tv falling forward?

  13. Alex September 27, 2007 at 2:31 pm

    ITS STILL FOAAAAAM, ie, CRADLE to big foamy Graveyard.

  14. Innovative Use for Foam... September 27, 2007 at 1:19 pm

    […] with the new t.v., computer monitor, or other bulky, but fragile items we buy. Well, according to Inhabitat, Tom Ballhatchet, has come up with a new concept to put that foam to a second good use–how […]

  15. Joyce September 27, 2007 at 1:08 pm

    That is the best idea for packaging material!

  16. Finlay September 27, 2007 at 12:55 pm

    That’s so beautiful. I hope everything starts coming packaged like that. Imagine if your shiny new iBook came with a prebuilt heat-dissipating stand!

  17. Richard September 27, 2007 at 12:19 pm

    Nice stand, and i can imagine it would provide some nice shapes and intricate details if used for different products too. Plus the stand would fit the product proportionately.

get the free Inhabitat newsletter

Submit this form
popular today
all time
most commented
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
Federated Media Publishing - Home