If you’ve filed beanbag chairs away in the same brain compartment as lava lamps, you might want to reconsider. The Bean About is a whole new way of looking at the old college dorm standard.
Australian designers Andy Audsley and Vanessa Wright have re-imagined the beanbag chair as a portable piece of furniture that folds itself into a convenient backpack so that you can carry it to kids’ sports events (no more chilly/burning metal bleachers to squirm on while you try to watch the game), picnics, the beach… in fact, pretty much anywhere.
The Bean About is as much about comfort as it is about convenience, though. The designers wanted a seat they could carry easily but would give them back support when they sat, and they disliked the rigidity of regular folding chairs as well as the stick-to-you-ness of inflatables. (And of course, inflatables are prone to deflating when you least expect it.)
As the “setup” diagram shows, there really isn’t any setup to deal with. You simply shake the lightweight polystyrene beans from one side of the bag to the other, plop it down and plump it up. You can adjust the angle as you desire, so you can be more upright if you’re sipping a drink and lower if you want to lounge with a book or just catch some z’s. Then you plonk yourself down and enter relax mode. When you’re ready to leave, just stand up (warning: you’ll probably be reluctant to do this, as you’re so comfortable where you are), shake the beans back to the other side of the bag and make your way home. Ta-da. The company is very eco-conscious, and designed the pack to use half the number of beans that a regular beanbag does.
“This makes it light enough for kids, compact enough to be folded and easier to carry, while minimizing the impact on the environment,” the designers explain.
Right now there are two adult designs and three designs tailored to kids, all made from durable, waterproof polyester. The colorful kids’ bags are 7-percent smaller in size and give a comfortable fit for children as young as aged 3.
Think of the Bean About as an all-size, all-family-member type of seat—you can hike with them, beach with them, park with them. We even picture ourselves not going anywhere and just smooshing into them in front of the TV for family movie night. Your Bean About; your rules. There’s no judging here.
The Bean About has two pockets on the outside where you can stash your wallet or phone, and there are three more hidden inside for other on-the-go essentials. And of course the backpack straps make it easy to toss the whole shebang on your back and take off.
Bonus! The Bean About project supports three critically endangered species through quarterly donations to organizations working to protect them: the tiger, mountain gorilla and rock wallaby. All three are featured in eye-catching bold designs on the kids’ Bean About. We’re hoping they might also make the adult size in the bright prints down the road… Stay tuned!