Architecture Students 15th Annual Vellum Furniture Design Show

Cal Poly Architecture Students to Exhibit Furniture Designs in 15th Annual Show Nov. 2 and 3

 SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly’s Architecture Department is co-hosting the 15th annual Vellum Furniture Design Exhibition with Vellum Design Build, a San Luis Obispo design-and-build firm, on Nov. 2 and 3. The juried competition asks students to conceive and construct projects that range from tables and chairs to light fixtures, toys and other furniture design solutions that will be on display in downtown San Luis Obispo at 1185 Monterey St., between Santa Rosa and Toro streets.

 Nearly 195 students in Cal Poly’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design will participate in this year’s exhibition. Designs must be original and fabricated by each student or team of students. Their projects will be judged on function, individuality and beauty by a panel of experts in the field. The student or team of students who design the top project will receive the Space Architects’ Milano Grand Prize and travel next April to Milan, Italy, for Salone Internazionale del Mobile, the largest furniture fair in the world.

“This competition reconfirms the notion that students can seek validation in their work through the design and fabrication of full-scale realizations of furniture to refine their design language and to test out body-scaled straightforward uses such as seating, lighting and tables,” said co-organizer and Architecture Professor Tom di Santo. “It is amazing to see so many brilliant examples of Learn by Doing that the students achieve in such a short period of time. The Vellum competition provides a true life testcase employing real budgets, real materials, real engagement with suppliers, fabricators and manufacturers plus real design timelines and construction schedules not typically incorporated into academic enterprise.” 

 An opening reception will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 2, and the show continues on Saturday, Nov. 3, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. All events are free and open to the public. 

For more information on Vellum and to see pictures from past shows, visit


Cal Poly fifth-year architecture student Mackenzie Stickney enjoys the comfort of her award-winning entry made of solid stock maple and leather.

Photo information: Vellum.jpg — Cal Poly fifth-year architecture student Mackenzie Stickney enjoys the comfort of her award-winning entry made of solid stock maple and leather. The lounge chair, titled “The Montreal,” received the AIA: Modern Master Award at last year’s Vellum Furniture Competition.

About the College of Architecture and Environmental Design

With more than 1,900 students, Cal Poly’s acclaimed College of Architecture and Environmental Design (CAED) is the only program of its type in the nation with eight degree programs in five closely related departments: architectural engineering, architecture, city and regional planning, construction management, and landscape architecture. For more than half of a century, the CAED programs and 16,000 alumni have been a positive influence on the forces that shape the planning, design and construction worlds. More information is available at


Tom di Santo


Ray Ladd


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