For David Irwin, design ideas grow out of his own observations – things that make him stop and wonder why, or how. Originally from Northern Ireland, Irwin was drawn to Northumbria University in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, by its reputation for hands-on training. Before graduating from the 3-D Design program in 2007, he won the New Designers Peter Walker Award for Innovation in Furniture Design with his final project, a steam-bent timber frame chair. The chair also caught the attention of the design director at Habitat, who picked it up for the company’s collection. In 2010, Irwin completed a post-graduate fellowship in the Designers in Residence Program at Northumbria’s School of Design, a program that furnishes workspace, equipment and mentoring to chosen graduates of the 3-D Design program. A year later, he founded his own studio in Newcastle, focusing on furniture, lighting and accessory design that combines a strong concept with fundamental utility, qualities evident in his Narin Folding Chair, Arca Wall Board and Trove Desktop Storage.