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Not Just for the Birds

Océ Arizona 350 XT used to create 'seedy' dining experience.




Chicago-based design and consulting firm Nelson collaborated with Océ to create a surreal dining suite and tablescape, while benefiting a good cause at the same time.

The two companies took part in the eighth annual Dining by Design, put on by the Chicago chapter of the Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA). The Dining by Design event showcases individuals in the design community and pairs them with generous table sponsors to create three-dimensional dining suites that are also works of art.

Jim Pelletier, senior project designer at Nelson, who had previously worked with Océ on another project, teamed up with Coalesse Inc., a Chicago-based supplier of lifestyle furniture, to come up with the “birds of a feather” theme that would comprise a pink bird-cage aesthetic.

Pelletier then worked with Jeffrey Brito, manager of Océ’s Display Graphics Knowledge Center in Itasca, Illinois, to produce the graphics. In keeping with the “birds of a feather” theme, they used an Océ Arizona 350 XT to print a birdseed image. A standard, white, cotton tablecloth—sourced from a local linen store and then professionally cleaned—was placed on a self-adhesive vinyl (sticky-side up), on the Arizona’s vacuum table. The birdseed image was then printed directly onto the tablecloth; the oversized table allowed the cloth to be produced in one piece without seams, Pelletier reports.

The Dining by Design event was one of three DIFFA events held over three days. Dinner was served to approximately 450 people in each sponsor’s dining suite. In all, more than 1350 design professional attended the three DIFFA events.





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