Everyone sees something different when they look at Stretch Out - Home Wear, a portable indoor tent system designed by Jolien Hanemaaijer. That’s totally normal, explains the 24-year-old Dutch designer. "It deals with a subject that’s close to most people’s heart—the home—so people respond very intuitively to it," she says. Her Pilates teacher uses it as an outdoor exercise shelter. My first instinct was to build the world’s largest modular fort.
Since she graduated from the Royal Academy of Art, Hanemaaijer, like so many other recent graduates, has spent a lot of time hopping from city to city. She became fascinated with the way travel and instability affects our personal routines. "Sometimes I felt at home right away, while at other times it felt like there was no place for me," she says. "I started to notice that a lot of the buildings and houses we inhabit have a very distinctive structure, which leaves little room for our own personal habits." The idea for Stretch Out grew directly from the alienation and loneliness of travel. "I wanted to create an independent and flexible space," she writes—a home away from home.
As demonstrated by the mustachioed Dutchmen in the video above, the shelter is fairly easy to assemble. Unbuckle the carrying strap, and piece together its beachwood poles as you would an old-school tent. Stabilize the structure with a rope, and switch on the hanging globe lamp. Textiles—a bark-printed blanket and an teal ombre screen—offer warmth and a bit of privacy.
Hanemaaijer calls Stretch Out a "micro-shelter" for guerilla campers. What that means is up to you, whether it’s aggregating the tents in an epic, Community-style blanket fort, or slinging one over your shoulder for a survival adventure, à la Bear Grylls. Those poles could work as fishing rods, right?