FOAM-FILLED BEAN BAG CHAIRS

Fan Mail: Our Xorbee is the centerpiece of our living room

Posted by Dan Holmes on

I never owned a beanbag as a child. I once dated a full-grown man who had three in his tiny one-bedroom apartment, but I, personally, never partook in the craze.

Growing up, Momma had strictly forbid the pellet filled furniture in our household, though I was permitted a variety of "inflatable" chairs and couches. I never understood the reasoning behind giving a young adult furniture that could pop or leak at the slightest introduction of a sharp object, but I could hardly complain; as that was what I had. At least it seemed to foster an acute sense of property ownership and maintenance, as I quickly became skilled at adhering patches, and instituting creative repairs. (The first lesson being that BandAids do not stop air based leaks.)

Like waterbeds, bean bag chairs were the craze during my childhood, and still very popular among the gaming and casual furniture consumer today. Regardless of the filling, there is simply something comforting about falling into a material that molds to your every nook and cranny.

Like most iconic concepts, even the classic bean bag chair has come into the 21st century; though the Xorbee might be a little offended to be compared to such a primitive creature. Similar to so many of my favorite home lounging comforts (bedding, pillows, etc) the Xorbee foam furniture relies on a filling entirely comprised of memory foam. There's a reason FOAM is now universally used in so many high end and luxury products; it's not only durable, but comfortable.

Foam, unlike PVC pellet, water, and air based furniture, returns to it's previous state quickly while still providing unmatched support and comfort throughout the entire surface area. Xorbee's unique foam based material also naturally regulates temperature, proving a much better lounger, year-round, and even eliminating the need for heavy blankets and Snuggies. And, should this sack ever tear open you're not looking at water damage or millions of dangerous plastic pellets!

 

I first discovered Xorbee looking for therapy alternatives for a friend with an autistic range child. I recalled seeing an amazing blog post about how a bean bag style chair was one autistic child's sanctuary, providing the complete cradle support the child needed to feel calm and in control. However, there provided to be a drawback to the bean based lounge, that never returned to its form on its own, and proved difficult for the child to get out of, as well as cold during the winter nights.

The Xorbee seemed like the perfect solution; but I wanted to get my hands on one of them for my own family! Available in Big Pillows to ginormous Loungers, the Xorbee range fits any budget or space, and outlasts ordinary alternative furniture thanks to the 'self resetting' foam and beautifully crafted. washable, covers. Sold in 12 modern decor colors, in twill or microsude materials, Xorbee covers are the key to ensuring your foam-filled furniture investment outlasts even the rowdiest kids and guests.

We received the Xorbee Xcaliber with a cranberry red microsueade cover for official testing in our living room. At nearly six feet in diameter, this king-sized chair is suitable for seating 3-4 young children, or one "Jabba The Hutt" sized adult (as the website brags). Twill covers are included in the initial investment price, though microsuede proves easier to maintain and clean in the long run, and is much softer in my opinion (for the minor additional upgrade fee).

Of course, when ordering your Xorbee furniture, you can always choose to invest in alternate cover colors and materials at a later date.

When the Xorbee arrived I anticipated my UPS carrier would have a fit: this took two men to haul up the stairs to our condo, well over 40 pounds when compressed into a box 1/5th its expanded size. Just looking at the swollen shipping container made me nervous to unleash the beast within. Thankfully there are several great customer submitted unboxing videos to guide you through expectations and handling tips. You'll also find a simple visual guide for unpacking the foam material, and dressing the interior sack with your cover.

At first glance, the Xorbee was a giant, medical blue, crinkled ball of material; all of the air carefully suctioned out of the containing wrapper for shipping. I was grateful the foam sack didn't expand as rapidly as I'd anticipated, once the exterior packaging was pierced. In fact, there was plenty of time to peel the plastic wrapper off and set the expanding ball into the cover prior to massaging the foam to relaxation.

Once we'd zipped our microsuede cover over the Xorbee it was easy enough to roll the Xcalibur over, so the seam was against the floor, and continue massaging the clusters of foam pieces. During this process the once moderate-sized ball seemed to expand like a muffin top over the rim of a baking tin, taller and wider every second. The excitement seemed to build every second, while the beating of the foam clusters wore out excess energy from all of the holiday sugar (I decided to unleash this monster just after Christmas).

It should come as no surprise that I was, in fact, the last one to actually lay or sit on the Xcalibur, with one very enthusiastic adult and wide eyed 10-year old promptly plopping onto the giant red blob.

The Xorbee, for now, has replaced a giant five-foot square ottoman we'd previously had in front of our couch. It's not the most design friendly (as it's width expands when occupied), but I've yet to convince anyone that it should be relocated, it's truly the highlight of our home when guests or children are over. Sabrina plops into the middle of if after school each day and does not budge until I usually wake her up after homework around 6 PM.

As big as the Xcalibur is it is also very versatile in use; I can reshape the foam structure into a giant lounge chair, or prop it up against the corner of the living room as a couch, when I need the space.

Moving our Xorbee is certainly easier with two adults, but also manageable on my own; and the microsuede has proven a wonderful investment with kids and pets constantly climbing on it.

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