»The Wikkelhouse combines insulation and statics in a sustainable and intelligent manner – this minimalist combination is what makes the concept so exciting. Thanks to a special wrapping technique, the simple material of cardboard can be used to create versatile buildings.«Werner Aisslinger
Three questions for the founder Oep Schilling
Do you remember the moment when you had the idea of Wikkelhouse?
In 2012 I saw the Wikkelmachine for the first time and was utterly amazed by it. The machine looked unreal, as if it was made to be part in a science fiction movie. It was invented and created by a Dutch entrepreneur who had been working in the paper packaging industry for his whole life.
He believed cardboard was strong enough to build a house and so he did. Unfortunately the project failed but when I found the machine ten years later, the world was ready for a move towards sustainability. I saw the potential for Wikkelhouse. A house where design meets sustainability.
What was your personal highlight in developing Wikkelhouse? Was there a low point?
We definitely experienced some low points. No one believed we could do it. People did not take us seriously. But we kept going and used all our creativity to make Wikkelhouse a success.
I remember two important highlights: The first one was when our glue application idea worked and the other one was when I sold our first Wikkelhouse to the Hogeschool van Amsterdam. I was so happy after four years of trial, error and financial investments that someone really decided to buy a cardboard house. And now we have sold over 70 already!
Where do you see yourself and your project in the next five years?
I hope Wikkelhouse will set a new standard in small houses. I also hope Wikkelhouse will show people things can be done differently. If you can make a house out of cardboard, so many other things can be done. Maybe in five years we may have made only 500 Wikkelhouses but maybe 5000 young designers and makers will be inspired to do things differently – more sustainable, good design and lots of fun.